Remembering Barry Butler

Barry Butler has passed away. May his soul rest in peace.

Barry was a long-time table tennis Wheelchair athlete living in Ottawa. This is a sad day, but we will always remember Barry for his good nature, sense of humour and perseverance.

On behalf of Table Tennis Canada, its Board of Directors and its members, we send our deepest heartfelt condolences to Barry’s family and especially to his dear wife.

John MacPherson, long-time friend of Barry and long-time National Coach of our ParaTT Team, provides some insight in Barry’s long career as a wheelchair table tennis athlete:

Barry Butler 1946-2020

It is with profound sadness that I wish to acknowledge the life and times of my dear friend and colleague Barry Butler. Barry was one of the inaugural paraTT players in Canada. He played earlier in his life but and came back in the early 2000s to represent Canada on the national team.

As a national coach I had the opportunity to travel with him from 2003 until 2019. Barry always conducted himself in a manner becoming of a national team athlete. He was always extremely sensitive of his  surroundings and the people he met, and of course the great effort required to be a national team athlete.

In addition, I had the opportunity of spending the month of January with him in Florida from 2008 until last year. We would take time to play in the various clubs in the Tampa area rekindling friendships that have been made over the years.

Barry also has a legacy of work with Sport Canada as a consultant. He knew the ins and outs of the administrative systems that ran amateur sports in this country.

For me personally it would be his “unique” personality and  understanding of the world that impressed me most. He was an intellect and would take great strides to help anyone who needed him. For many many years he also ran the ParaTT club in the Ottawa area and I know for sure that his expertise will be missed.

Fortunately, both Adham  and I were able to see Barry while he was in the hospital in Ottawa a few months ago. TT Canada awarded him a long-term service award, which was certainly highly appreciated by Barry and his wife.

For those of you who met Barry you know that we were given an opportunity to be in the presence of a wonderful human being. May you find peace my  friend.

John MacPherson