Paul G. Butler is the voice and the fountain pen for Clinton County veterans organizations and related projects, and this Friday he will be inducted into the Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame for his exceptional post-military advocacy and volunteerism for the veteran community.
Inductees into the Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame served their country honorably and continue to serve their communities, state and nation after discharge through volunteerism, advocacy, professional distinction, public service and philanthropy.
“I see the need to keep the positive aspects of our veteran community constantly in front of the non-veteran community to let them know what we do after we get out — still serving the community, state, and nation after we get out,” Butler said.
His post-military involvements and achievements are, he said, something he kind of “fell into” and has thoroughly enjoyed doing.
Early on, his volunteerism led him to become the American Legion Post 49’s Buckeye Boys State chairman for a dozen years, and he found working with those young men to be rewarding.
Sticking with the younger set, he was the Wilmington post’s high school oratorical scholarship program chairman for eight years, coaching two state of Ohio winners. In college, Butler had a dual major in English and in public speaking, so he had a background for tutoring young people to deliver speeches in public.
He’s been involved with the Clinton County Voiture 992 (40 & 8) Nurses Training Scholarship Program for years. This local program has received state and national recognition for highest per capita donations and scholarships awarded.
Having experienced hospitalization, he knew you spend a lot more time during a hospital stay with your nurse than your doctor, he commented.
Butler has been director of the 40 & 8’s Flags for First Graders Program where area first-graders are provided a small U.S. flag and hear a veteran or two talk. In fact, he was director of the first flags for first graders program in Ohio.
“Of all my veterans activities, the most fulfilling is being volunteer chaplain for Community Care Hospice in the veteran-to-veteran program,” said Butler.
The goal, he said, is to bring back a little dignity to veterans who are in hospice care at the end of their life.
Butler has been active in both the Wilmington American Legion and the local VFW.
When he writes veteran-related articles for the Wilmington News Journal, he said part of the audience he wants to reach are younger veterans “to let them know there are local veterans groups that are doing things they might be interested in helping out with.”
While there’s no doubt it’s a two-way street, Butler noted he resides in a community that strongly supports veterans. Fundraising efforts for two Honor Flights and for the Veterans Memorial on courthouse square were accomplished in remarkably short periods of time.
As for his time in the military, he enlisted and served in the U.S. Navy during the Vietnam War era from 1968 to 1972, and was based on Guam for 21 months. He was with Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron 3, and was on flight missions in a support role over the South China Sea and surrounding ocean, communicating with submarines.
When he wasn’t in the air he was working on airplanes as an aircraft electrician.
The Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame was created in 1992. Each year, an executive committee, made up of representatives from Ohio’s veterans organizations, selects up to 20 honorees.
Butler will join five previous Clinton County inductees in the Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame: James W. Denver, Azariah W. Doan, Robert E. Grim, Thomas Guinn, and Jonathan C. Kirk.
Reach Gary Huffenberger at 937-556-5768.