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Memories of Butch Lanphear
OBITUARY:

BUTCH LANPHEAR
Went to heaven at 2:54pm on friday July 10, 2009 sans the cancerous tumors that took his life. Hopefully he is with his Aunt Judy . . .
Born July 17, 1997 in Rochester, New York
Died July 10, 2009 in Las Vegas, Nevada
He loved going bye-bye in the car and playing with his tennis ball.
He leaves behind two grieving dad's Ray and Rodd, and a confused and lonely little sister Bleu.
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Butch was found in the parkling lot of RNews on Mt. Hope Blvd. in Rochester, New York on the edge of the Genessee River. He was curled up in a ball in front of the rear tire of the Live truck about to leave on assignment, the driver was talking to a reporter, van in drive, his foot on the brake. The reporter saw Butch eventho he was black, tiny, against a black tire and at midnight. He said "don't move, keep the vehicle still, there's something in front of the tire, alive"!

My apartment had just been burglarized, mostly irreplaceable family jewerly was stollen. I decided it was time to get a dog, my landlord didn't care, I had a yard and I hadn't had a dog since my divorce 12 years before. Bonnie got the dogs in the divorce. Yukon Jack and Midget Marie had long since passed away, and shortly after getting Butchie, my dear Bonnie passed away as well.
My sister had found a beautiful young black lab at the local animal shelter back in my home town of Waterloo, New York at Beverly Animal Shelter. I went down, walked her for quite a while, she was beautiful, a bit fiesty for me, a very energetic girl. I told them I would think about it.
The next night at 1am my phone rang, it was my reporter friend, "guess what I'm holding on my lap right now"? I wasn't happy, told him I really didn't care, I was asleep and have to get up at 6 o'clock! Then he told me the story, a young black puppy, real cute, found in the parking lot. No body could take it for the night, didn't know what they were going to do. I was awake now, and said "you know I just test walked a black lab yesterday, I'm looking for a dog . . . hello"?
So, get "it" (didn't even ask what sex the pup was) over here. When the outside door opened, I was already at the inside door, and there "he" was, WOW. I swear he was smiling, my eyes were welling up (as they are now recalling this) and he started toward me, tottering, he was young! I wanted a pup but man he looked to be just weined if that. But none the less, here he was tail waggin (little tiny thing) and that "smile". That was it! My constant companion for the next 12 years. The vet estimated his age at 3 weeks! I forgot his weight, but I do have a baby tooth in a little tiny jar in my printers box! He told me to pick a date in the middle of July for Butch's birthday. I decided on the 17th, same as my deceased mother. The vet said he was definately lab, probably some pit and God only knows what else, but he was an intelligent (too much sometimes for his own good), faithful and loving boy.

His first christmas I wrapped several presents for him and scattered them around under the tree with everyone elses. Christmas morning I awoke to find Butch not on the bed. I went in the livingroom and there's Butch, sitting on the loveseat, using his paws like hands to hold this present and he was tearing little strips off at a time. To top it off, it was one of his presents and he hadn't harmed any other wrapped package under the tree.
The present? It was a furry long snake looking thing that I had rolled and folded then wrapped with a bow. It wasn't food, it was brand new, I don't know how he decided to pick that particular package but he did. He was a character for sure, strong headed a lot of the time not giving up til he got what he wanted. And if he was mad at me he would go in the bathroom and ever so gently pull the toilet paper off the roll and walk backward and pull it out of the room and down the hall.
I caught him once, I was on the landing of the stairway looking out the window for a minute.
I think I was working on the window ledge and was taking a break. I guess he didn't see me or hear me, forgot I was up there and all of a sudden I heard soft nails on the hardwood floor, I knew it was too slow to be normal. Sure enough, there's Butch walking slowly backward down the hall with toiilet paper in his mouth. He made it out of the bathroom, from one end of the hall to the other and into the master bedroom! He got that far before it broke. I had found the trail of t-paper many times before unbroken, always trying to figure out how he did it. Then I caught him, too funny.

I brought Butch home yesterday, July 20th, his ashes anyway, he's home none the less, now if anything were to happen to me, I know we will be burried together. I held the box on my lap all the way home from the vets office, right where he always wanted to be if not at the window.
He made so many trips from Rochester to Waterloo through the NYS Thruway toll booths before he was big enough for the attendant to even see him on my lap. Plus he was usually so tired by the time we left all of my sisters houses (3 of them) and through the drive-thru at McDonalds, (he loved McDonalds fries) he was exhausted, sound to sleep, motionless, he just blended in right there on my lap.
But when he got older some of the attendents would keep a box of dog bisquits in their booth, they would recognise our bright red little Honda and he cleaned up! My sisters fussed over him, they gave him treats, my neices and nephews played with him, God only knows what food or treats they gave him. He had it made!

This is kind of corny but yesterday after I got home with Butchies remains and was just sitting there holding them, praying to God they were really his reamins and thinking about him, missing him, I wrote this down. I've never done this before, but I did it, it just came to me so I guess this is the place for it.

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I LOVED YOU SO, I DIDN'T WANT TO GO,
I LOVED MY LIFE AND THE PLACES WE WOULD GO.

BUT I WAS SICK, MY DIGNITY LOW,
I COULDN'T RUN AND PLAY LIKE BEFORE,
IT WAS MY TIME TO GO.

I KNOW IT WAS HARD, YOU DIDN'T WANT ME TO GO,
I KNOW YOU LOVED ME, BUT YOU HAD TO LET ME GO.

THE DECISION WAS HARD, I KNOW IT BROKE YOUR HEART,
BUT I'M HAPPY HERE, HEALTHY AND WHOLE.

WE'LL MEET AGAIN, WE'LL RUN AND PLAY LIKE BEFORE,
WE'LL SWIM AND PLAY BALL AS WE'D ALWAYS DONE.

WHEN YOU COME TO MEET ME THE TEARS WILL FLOW,
THE KISSES WILL BE MANY,
WE'LL WALK TOGETHER FOREVER
NEVER TO BE APART NO MORE.

UNTIL THEN I LOVE YOU AND MISS YOU.
THANK YOU FOR LETTING ME GO.
I LOVE YOU,
BUTCHIE

BY: RAY LANPHEAR
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA
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