Dennis Ray Butler, 80, passed away on Saturday, June 22, 2019. Born on February 23, 1939, in Crane, Texas, he was the son of Halsey Othella Butler and Alice Elizabeth Justice Butler.
Dennis pursued a life-long career in education, both in learning and in teaching. He graduated from Odessa High School, then received his Bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Texas in Austin. He then enlisted in the Army, serving in Germany as an Interpreter and radio operator. After his military service had ended, he returned to Texas in 1965 to start a family and further his education.
He received his Master’s degree in English Literature from Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls. He then began a 49-year career, teaching various English courses in various schools of higher learning. These included Lamar University in Beaumont, Tarleton State in Stephenville, Eastfield College in Mesquite, and finally spending the remaining 25 years at Southwestern Christian College in Terrell, from whom he received an honorary Doctorate upon his retirement in 2016.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Halsey and Elizabeth Butler; brother-in-law, Archie Edward Proctor; and nephew, Joshua James Butler.
Dennis is survived by his daughters, Julie Lee Gwartney and husband Gerald, and Lara Beth Slawson and husband Keith; grandchildren, Daniel Keith Slawson and wife Tessa, and Ashby Beth Slawson; one great-grandchild on the way; sister, Anita Proctor; brother, Floyd Butler and wife Ann; niece, D’Ann Proctor
Gonzales; nephews, Doug Proctor, Bradley Sutton, and Erik Butler; and many other family members and friends.
A visitation for friends and family will be held on Saturday, June 29, 2019 from 12:00pm – 2:00pm at Sterling-White Funeral Home. Funeral services will begin at 2:00pm. Interment will be private at a later date. Arrangements have been entrusted to Sterling-White Funeral Home, 11011 Crosby-Lynchburg Rd., Highlands, TX 77562.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to Southwestern Christian College (SWCC), PO Box 10, Terrell, TX 75160, Attn: SWCC Business Office. Please mark your donation “in memory of Dennis Butler”.