C. David Butler

December 18, 1943April 11, 2014

C. David Butler died Friday, April 11, 2014 after a battle with lymphoma. He is survived by his wife Catherine Oakes Butler; his children David Mather Butler, Jennifer Smith Butler (Glenn Zuber), Wendy Corrine Butler (Stephan Boccara), Matthew Carden Butler, and Charles Cotton Butler (Anne Berry); his stepchildren Branham Jarrell and Andrew Jarrell (Amanda); his sisters Florence Dawson and Sally Wester; eight grandchildren; seven nieces and nephews; and his former wife Susie Butler.

Born in 1943 to Charles Henry Butler and Lucy Carden Butler, he spent his early years in Rockmart, Georgia, later moved to Augusta, and finally settled in Atlanta, where he graduated from North Fulton High School in 1961. He attended the University of Georgia, where he obtained a B.A. and a law degree. He began his legal career at Redfern, Butler and Morgan, where he was a founding partner. From 1985 until 1997, he was a partner at Alston and Bird. He served from 1997 until 2004 as the United States Trustee for the Region 21 Bankruptcy Court, and then joined Shapiro Fussell, where he worked until his retirement in 2011. He was a founding director and twice president of the Southeastern Bankruptcy Law Section, a founder of the Atlanta Bar Association's Bankruptcy Law Section and later was elected as President of the Atlanta Bar Association. He was awarded the David W. Pollard Achievement Award by the Atlanta Bar Association, Bankruptcy Law Section in 2004 and the Charles E. Watkins, Jr. Award for Distinguished and Sustained Service by the Atlanta Bar Association in 2007. He was a fellow of the American College of Bankruptcy and a member of the American Bankruptcy Law Institute.

David was a leader and mentor in his community and among family and friends. He led various men’s fellowship groups in Atlanta and Big Canoe and was a leader in the church. He was active throughout his adult life with the YMCA, serving on the Board of Directors and as Secretary of the Metropolitan YMCA of Atlanta and as Past Chairman of the Downtown Branch of the YMCA. His large, extended family looked to him as a mentor and for wisdom and support.

He lived his life with an infectious sense of adventure, fun and humor. He had a passion for motorcycles, participating in off-road enduro races in his younger years and organizing weekend and cross-country motorcycle trips into retirement. He regularly spent his lunch hour playing basketball, where was proud to be a first pick even as he neared retirement. He coached his five children in basketball and also emceed the games (with an entertaining mix of humor and seriousness). He loved singing, playing guitar, and kept an eclectic collection of music, always remaining current but never forgetting his old favorites.

Funeral services will be held on April 16 at 1:00 p.m. at North Avenue Presbyterian Church, 607 Peachtree Street, with a reception immediately following. Burial will follow on April 17 at 11:30 a.m. at Big Canoe Chapel Cemetery. Calling hours will be April 15 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at H.M. Patterson & Son, 1020 Spring Street. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Reflection Ministries, One Piedmont Center, Suite 130, Atlanta, Georgia 30305 and Campus Crusade for Christ for the ministry of Nikolin Dodaj, P.O. Box 68222, Orlando, Florida 32832. Online condolences may be made at


  • Visitation Tuesday, April 15, 2014
  • Memorial Service Wednesday, April 16, 2014
  • Interment Thursday, April 17, 2014

C. David Butler

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May 12, 2014

Cathy, I am so sorry to hear of your loss. My prayers are with you as you go through time without your precious David. Your strength will come from God and also from those who love you so. Love and prayers, Claudia Daniell

April 21, 2014

Grief can be so hard, but our special memories help us cope during this most difficult time. May the God of all comfort and the love of your family give you the strength you need to endure. ( 2 Corinth.1:3,4) Janet

John Brent

April 19, 2014

A note of sympathy for our dear friend David. Few lawyers will ever leave us with as fine a legacy as he has. May you be warmly embraced by the courts of heaven. John and Melanie Brent

Harmon T. Smith, Jr.

April 16, 2014

David and I were in Law School together, and neighbors at Myrna Court in Athens, with he and Susie - he was a great guy and I always enjoyed seeing him over the years - he always had something humorous to say - I always remember seeing him in court after not having seen him in many years, and also, after I had grown bigger. He remarked "Harmon is that you in there?" I had to laugh, because that was David. I will miss him.

April 16, 2014

Jennifer, you must have had a wonderful dad, because look at what a wonderful woman he raised in you. I am so sorry for your loss. May God comfort you through those around you.


April 16, 2014

Jennifer, Glenn -- your church family at NC4 is holding you and your family up in prayer today and in the days to come. With our love,
North Chevy Chase Christian Church

Laura Brown

April 16, 2014


Sending you prayer and strength from DC. Laura and Fawn from meet up

April 15, 2014

David was always one of my favorite people at the YMCA. He was the unofficial leader of noon pick up basketball and kept the other lawyers from trying to litigate every foul. I remember him dressing up as Lincoln for a fundraising kick off. What a treat. He was a champion of the YMCA and we will be forever grateful. Heaven is a better place today. Katie Carstens, VP, Metro Atlanta YMCA.

Dianna Pope

April 15, 2014

I am sorry so for your loss. I worked with David for many years and he was a fine person. He will be missed.

Cynthia M. Barron

April 15, 2014

My heart-felt, deepest sympathy to all of Mr. Butler's loved ones.
Mr. Butler was a man strong in faith who cared about all people. He had the rare ability to make you feel like a King or Queen. I provided clerical support for him when he was the UST of the U.S. Trustee's Ofc. from 1997-2004. He was a man of wisdom who kept his Bible right on the top of his desk. I loved his sense of humor, especially his motorcycle trip stories. He would sometimes return from playing basketball at lunchtime, limping or with a nugget under his eye ... I would exclaim, Mr. Butler I know you're not going to play tomorrow, and he would always reply, "of course I am"! His last email to me recently was "All is well with my soul".