In Loving Memory of Tommie Morrel Butler
Tommie Morrel Butler, a beloved member of the Gillette community, passed away peacefully on September 29, 2023, at the age of 88. Born on May 6, 1935, in Gillette, Wyoming, Tommie was the son of Ryburn and Letha (Thompson) Butler.
Tommie's life was dedicated to his family, his work, and his community. After graduating from high school in Campbell County, he married his soul mate, Connie Bridges, on January 22, 1960, in Rapid City, South Dakota. Together, they built a beautiful life and shared many cherished moments until Connie's passing.
Tommie's commitment to serving his country led him to join the Air Force in 1954. He proudly served his country for four years, being honorably discharged in 1957, however, his dedication to the military continued, as he remained in the reserves until 1962.
As a skilled mechanic, Tommie played a vital role in the early days of the coal industry in Gillette. He dedicated over two decades of his career to one of the first coal mines established in the town. Later, Tommie pursued his passion for repairing televisions and electronics, starting Butler Enterprises. His entrepreneurial spirit led him to establish "Krafty Korner," a beloved gift shop at the Gillette Senior Center.
Outside of work, Tommie embraced the joys of life. He spent countless hours exploring the beauty of nature through fishing, boating, and hunting for Indian artifacts. Many summers were spent at the family's cherished second home in Fort Smith, Montana. Tommie's enthusiastic spirit inspired him to actively participate on various boards in town, including the Gillette Senior Center and the Campbell County Cemetery Board, most notably, and he was an active member of the State Historical Society.
Tommie will be dearly missed by his loved ones. He is survived by his daughters, Becky Butler and Brenda (John) Opseth, as well as his son, Tommie Butler Jr (Aya). He also leaves behind his brother, Charles Butler, and his sister, Janie Wilkerson (Terry). Tommie's memory will forever remain in the hearts of his granddaughters, Alicia Gilmer and Hannah Brown, along with his three great-grandsons, four great-granddaughters, and numerous nephews and nieces. He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife Connie, his brother Jimmy Butler, and his sister-in-law Jackie Butler.
The family would like to express their heartfelt gratitude to the compassionate staff at the Legacy Health and Rehabilitation Center for their dedicated care throughout Tommie's stay.
A public visitation and viewing to reflect on Tommie's life will be held on Thursday, October 5th, at Gillette Memorial Chapel (210 W. 5th St.) from 4pm to 6pm. Friends, family, and community members are invited to pay their respects and share their memories of a life well-lived. On Friday, October 6th, a formal funeral service, officiated by Pastor Gordon Harper, will take place at Gillette Memorial Chapel at 2pm. For those unable to attend in person, the service will be available via webcast on Tom's tribute page, allowing all who loved Tommie to find solace and support during this difficult time. In honor of Tommie's wishes, a graveside service will immediately follow at Mount Pisgah Cemetery in Gillette, where he will be laid to rest.
Expressions of sympathy and condolences may be shared on this tribute page, and memorial contributions in Tommie's name can be sent care of Gillette Memorial Chapel, 210 W. 5th St., Gillette, WY, 82716.