Funeral services are scheduled for Sunday for John Butler, the long-time announcer for Evanston Township High School sports events, who died earlier this week.
ETHS Athletic Director Chris Livatino says Butler, the brother-in-law of long-time ETHS coach Willie May, started working as an official for May's program in 1975, working as head timer, clerk of the course and later the official handling announcing and scoring the meets.
"John is a big reason that Dan Phillips relays, Kevin Richards Invite, and Central Suburban league Invite run smoothly," Livatino said. Butler also served as an announcer for the Evanston football and basketball games during Coach May’s athletic directorship.
Butler attended Thornton High School from 1961-65 where he was a member of the cross country and track and field teams and helped break the record for the 880 and mile relay teams. He spent 38 years with the Chicago Board of Education before retiring from Sullivan High School where he taught a variety of history subjects while coordinating assemblies, academic competitions, enrichment seminars, teaching night school and managing voter registrations.
"I will always remember John’s phrasing, 'Here comes Evanston' when announcing the races in the fieldhouse, Livatino said. "Although he grew up on the south side, John was a huge fan of our ETHS student-athletes, coaches and our community. He was such a kind and gentle man who will be missed by so many in Evanston and throughout the track and field world."
Services will be held Sunday, Dec. 27, at Leaks Funeral Home, 18400 Crawford Ave. in Country Club Hills. The wake will be at 2 p.m. with the funeral at 3 p.m.