Martha Jane Butts / Sept. 17, 1922-Jan. 25, 2010

Published 9:58am Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Martha Jane Butts, 87, of Dowagiac, formerly of Grand Blanc, passed away at 4:45 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 25, 2010, at Borgess-Lee Memorial Hospital.

Martha’s life began on Sept. 17, 1922, in Hartland, Mich., daughter of Lorrin J. and Caroline A. (Swann) Miller.

She was united in marriage to Ralph E. Butts on Jan. 24, 1945, in Atlas, Mich., at Atlas Baptist Community Church.

Martha worked on the family dairy and fruit farm and made the best cider in town.
She was a substitute mail carrier and sorter for several years.

Martha worked at the Grand Blanc Perry Middle School in the cafeteria and also at Grant’s Department Store in Grand Blanc.

Martha and Ralph were grand marshals of Grand Blanc’s Sesquicentennial parade.
She was very crafty and loved to knit and crochet, even making teddy bears.

Martha continued to sew pillows for heart patients in Florida, where she and Ralph spent many winters.

She was involved in bringing underprivileged children to church in Frostproof, Fla.
Martha loved to watch the birds from her many bird feeders at her Dowagiac home.
Her loving family includes: her children, Frank L. (Marsha) Butts, David J. (Catherine) Butts, both of Dowagiac, and Caroline G. (Al) Bunikis of Phoenix, Ariz.; a sister, Dorothy Fader of Grand Blanc; a cousin, Ruth Sheets of Boyne City; seven grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews.

Martha is preceded in death by: her husband, Ralph E. Butts; grandson, Andrew Bunikis; and brother, Morris Miller.

Her family will gather with friends on Thursday from 6 to 8 p.m. at Yazel and Clark Chapel, 405 Center St., Dowagiac, and Friday from noon to 2p.m. at Hill Funeral Home, 11723 S. Saginaw St., Grand Blanc, where her funeral service will be held at 2 p.m. led by the Rev. John Kasper of Dowagiac First United Methodist Church.

She will be laid to rest in Crestwood Memorial Cemetery in Grand Blanc.
Memorial contributions in her name may be directed to First United Methodist Church.

Please sign her guestbook and leave a memory of Martha at

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