Ward Butler, age 88, of Huron, passed away peacefully at home surrounded by his family on Sunday, February 3, 2019.

His funeral mass of Christian burial was celebrated at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, February 7, at Holy Trinity Catholic Parish in Huron. Military honors were conducted by the Huron Veteran’s Council at the service. Burial was in the St. Martin’s Catholic Cemetery.

Memorials may be directed to the Huron Regional Medical Center Hospice.

Ward was born on March 24, 1930, in Earlsboro, Oklahoma, to Patrick Henry and Leta (Smith) Butler. In 1938, the family moved from Tulsa where his father worked for the British American Oil Company to an 80-acre farm near Fort Dodge, Iowa, where Ward’s father was born and his grandparents lived.

He graduated in 1948 from Fort Dodge Senior High and then served three years in the Air Force during the Korean War. After receiving an honorable discharge, Ward enrolled at South Dakota State University in Brookings. He graduated on May 23, 1955, with a degree in agricultural economics. He married Jackie Berg on July 29, 1955, at St. Anne’s Catholic Church in Wabasso, Minnesota.They were married for 63 years and had four children.

Ward then began a 30-year career with the Farmers Home Administration in South Dakota. He did his training in De Smet and worked in Lake Andes, Plankinton, Brookings and the state office in Huron, where the family moved in 1970.

In 1985, he retired as the multi-housing coordinator for the FHA and started Ward Butler Appraisals Inc., which he operated with Jackie until they retired in 2001.

While living in Huron, Ward did volunteer work for the Center for Independence, which helps the developmentally disabled work and live in the community. He served on the Huron Area Center for Independence Board for 28 years and on the Center for Independence Foundation Board for 14 years. Ward also was a member of the Foundation’s Board of Directors and the longtime president of the Governing Board of Directors.

In 2000, the Center named a new client home in Huron the Butler House in recognition of his many contributions. Ward also is past president of the Huron Area Senior Center Board of Directors and the Greater Huron Development Corp., a former member of the Huron Area Chamber of Commerce Board and a member of the American Legion, which included a year as Legion commander in Plankinton.

Survivors include his wife, Jackie; sons, Pat of Rapid City, Mike of Sioux Falls, and Steve (Tina) of Huron; daughter, Lisa Isaacson of Sioux Falls; grandchildren, Jordan Butler, Tanner Butler, Alex Butler, Katie Butler, Sean Butler, Kelsey Kidd, Kourtney Isaacson and Grace Isaacson, who along with Dalton Kidd will serve as pallbearers; and six great-grandchildren; and a great-grandson who is on the way.

He was preceded in death by his parents; his brother, Pat; a grandson, Andrew Isaacson; and his father- and mother-in-law, Leonard and Helen Berg.

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So sorry to see the passing of Ward. I worked with Ward and Jackie when they had the appraisal business. I have very fond memories of Ward. Connie Hofer

A life well lived. Good father, husband, good man. He will be missed. Leo Pollock

Jackie and family: Patty and I are keeping your family in our prayers as you go through this difficult time. Huron has lost a great man who did such great work for the Huron community. He will be missed greatly. He was a great friend to our family and I know Patty enjoyed working with him all those years at the Center and I enjoyed having coffee with him over the years and talking sports. He was certainly a great member of the Greatest Generation! Mark and Patty Wendelgass 

So sorry to hear of Ward's passing. I've known Ward and Jackie for years while I lived in Huron. He was such a nice man and I know will be greatly missed. My thoughts and prayers go out to the entire family.  Jeannette Dickinson

Tina, Sorry for your family's loss. Gail Haeder

Jackie and Family, So sorry to read of the passing of Ward. My sincere sympathy to the family. It was a pleasure seeing him around the Fair office when Jackie worked there. Lots of fun memories. Vicki (Arteman) Simpson

Our sincere sympathy Jackie & family! Ward was a genuine leader and teacher. He trained me in house appraising in 1970  and we always relied on him to advise us on the best insurance coverage when open season came around. His involvement after retirement proves his sincerity and dedication to the betterment of mankind! We are in AZ, so will not make it to the funeral. Our thoughts and prayers are extended with all our love, Arlene & Ron Freesemann

Jackie, Steve, Tina and family; So sorry to hear of Ward’s passing. He lived a great life and left a positive impression with those he knew. I was fortunate enough to work with Ward on Center for Independence executive board. He had a deep compassion to help others and made me feel so welcomed. He loved his family dearly and was so proud of their accomplishments. Huron has truly lost a great one! Our thoughts and prayers are with each of you. Mike & Susan Taplett

Jackie, My thoughts and prayers are with you and you family. Bob and I enjoyed Ward's company very much. I have fond memories of our Friday night suppers. May you find comfort in your memories.  Janine Taylor

Ward was a good guy who provided a great service to the people of South Dakota with his years of Federal employment.  James Valer

Jackie and family. I haven't talked to you for a long time but we were in Legion Auxiliary together. Thoughts and prayers are with you.  Jeanette Johnson

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