Andy Lee Butts
February 14, 1949 – July 3, 2019
Born on Valentine’s Day in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma to Francis James and Bonnie Beatrice Butts, Andy was the fifth of seven sons.
Andy attended Keiser Elementary, Taft Jr high, and graduated from Northwest Classen High School. He was like most kids growing up in the 50’s and 60’s fascinated with hot rods and racing. He and oldest brother Jim both had ‘57 Chevy’s during high school years. Later came the Chevelles; he had a ‘66 and a ‘72 which were his pride and joy. He also had an infatuation with big trucks (18 wheelers), which later in life became his career.
Andy was drafted into the Army in May of 1969. He served his basic training in Ft. Polk, Louisiana and was scheduled for the front lines in Vietnam. His brother George served and was killed in Vietnam which caused a change in Andy’s orders; he was then stationed in Anchorage, Alaska to finish his tour.
After the military, he met and married his first wife Lavera. They had one son, Terry Lee Butts, named after his youngest brother Terry that passed away at the age of two from pneumonia. Terry Lee was killed in a car accident at the age of 16 which was lifelong devastation for Andy.
Andy tried many occupations, but eventually became the truck driver he had dreamed of becoming. He spent over 30 years traveling across the country, until his retirement at age 65.
He was married a total of five times, but none ever worked out and he never had any more children. He was however a great uncle, spending holidays with family and sending birthday gifts when he could. He had a heart of gold and was always willing to lend a helping hand to anyone in need.
Reflecting on Andy’s life, there are a great many memories. As a kid there was a gigantic cottonwood tree that all the older brothers built a treehouse in, the old burned out rail road station we played in, fishing the nearby ponds, hot rods at the sugar shack, rebuilding cars together, road trips in the back of his dad’s old ‘65 Chevy pickup, dances at our house with the hottest girls in town. I (Toney) always remember Andy being my bodyguard, he looked after me and made sure I was safe. He even let me take my driver’s test in that sweet ‘72 Chevelle I loved so much! Andy was a great brother and didn’t ask for much. Traveling as he did, he often brought back gifts for the kids and sisters-in-law and sometimes for the brothers. Occasionally when I was traveling, he and I would meet up in some distant town or city for dinner then go our separate ways. It was a thing we did since we both traveled and kept in touch.
As Jim and Tom got up in the years Andy moved closer to help me look after them. Ironically when Tom got really bad so did Andy. They both went to the hospital the very same day and neither ever made it back home. Andy was diagnosed with small cell lung cancer which had been spreading through his body unknown. His diagnosis—as hard as it was to accept—did not discourage him. He fought the fight and maintained a sense of humor to the end.
We all have to face the final moments at some point and we all wonder how it would be. I was with Andy in his final moments and as much as my heart hurts I am happy I was there, I believe he was too. I arrived and it was like he was waiting for me, he was happy when I walked in and not so much out of his head like the days prior. I made him a fresh glass of ice water and after a long drink he said that tasted really good and smiled as he laid his head back. We talked a few minutes then he began choking a little so I put my arm around him and raised him up. He hugged me and said he will be fine and began gazing out as if someone else was in the room talking to him. After a moment he said something I couldn’t quite understand then quietly and peacefully faded away in my arms. I believe his angel had come for him at that moment, he seemed to be at peace with leaving this world and the pain he had endured so long.
Andy passed away just one month after our brother Tom passed, and two weeks after his best pal and long time pet dog Simba who was over 20 years old. Simba was blind and deaf, but they were so close that it seemed they shared a sympathetic relationship; they felt good or bad at the same time, they even left this world to be together in the afterlife.
Andy was preceded in death by both parents, three brothers, and his only son. He will be dearly missed by us all but he will rejoice as he is reunited all the loved ones he has missed so much throughout his life.
- Kevin Butts, Pallbearer
- Ross Radford, Pallbearer
- Jerry Butts, Pallbearer
- Wesley Butts, Pallbearer
- Danny Butts, Pallbearer
- Juan Yanez, Pallbearer
- Funeral Service Sunday, July 7, 2019
Andy Lee Butts
July 5, 2019
Andy was a special guy, most of the time he was happy and trying to help others lol. He reminded me of Mr Bojangles. He would roll a lip or make the bitter beer face, to see us smile. Andy there a spot in my heart that's broken, until we meet again, my friend