In Memorium – Erick Butler, 57, Stalwart AIDS Walk Supporter

Editor’s note: Erick Butler passed away Dec. 18 at the age of 57. He was a great supporter of AIDS Walk Kansas City, and for years he organized a huge team of walkers through his employer, GE Financial. He will be dearly missed.
Erick’s former wife, Donna Butler, shared a few words about him.
Erick Butler passed away after a long battle with cancer. He worked for years as captain of the GE team that helps sponsor the AIDS Walk. He found a lot of joy in his work and helped raise a lot of money for a cause that was very dear to his heart. He leaves behind his daughter, Madison; his ex-wife, Donna, who was still his best friend; a blow-up doll; three siblings; and a host of other beloved family members and friends. Erick loved pink flamingos, lighthouses, The Golden Girls, Moonstruck, and The Carpenters. He loved animals and enjoyed cooking, as well as vacationing in Southern California. He was an outgoing social butterfly who was deeply loved and will be missed by all who knew him.
Here are a few words written about Erick by his friend Cathy Prather. 
Erick was a dear friend. His humor, honesty, bluntness, sincere feelings, his empathy for others, his thoughtful, kind and loving words, and so much more touched me (and often made me laugh, and occasionally blush).
I knew Erick through work at GE Financial. My ex-husband and my brother-in-law had AIDS, and I started walking in AIDS Walk a couple of years before my ex passed. Erick recruited me, welcomed me and supported me.
I brought my camera every year to capture the faces, moments and emotion of this amazing coming-together to support Kansas City. This event and the others meant so much to him, and he worked so hard at work to get the word out, to welcome each person and make them feel that anything they did, any amount they raised was important. He would get frustrated if things weren’t going the way he planned and would do anything he could to make it right.
He was always so appreciative of anything I did, staying in touch with me. Once he included me at a fancy get-together, where we roamed through a million-dollar apartment and ohhh-ed and ahhh-ed at the view. Another time I joined him and our site leader and other associates onstage at a walk. I felt a little out of place, but he made me feel comfortable and stayed beside me.
I miss his humor. His salty talk. His open and honest opinions. His raunchy pictures on Facebook. His jokes about his addiction to those hot men. And I miss seeing a man tell people just how much he loved them, how much they meant to him. How grateful he was to have them – us – in his life. And when you said the same to him, he’d blush. He looked so cute when he blushed.
Yes. These few words don’t touch what a great friend, a much-loved friend he was – and how very much he is missed.

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