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Henry J. Butch, who co-owned a small chain of diners in Buffalo from the late 1940s to the late 1960s, died Sunday (Aug. 23, 1998) in Kenmore Mercy Hospital after becoming ill at his Town of Tonawanda home.

He was 77.

The Wheeling, W.Va., native moved to Buffalo with his his family as a child and later graduated from Grover Cleveland High School.

Together with his late father, Butch ran a chain of four truck-stop restaurants called Butch's Diners across the city until the late 1960s. After that, he went to work for Westinghouse and Bethlehem Steel Corp. until his retirement in 1986.

Butch was a World War II Army veteran who served in Europe, including Italy and Germany.

A music lover, he was an accomplished trumpet and saxophone player.

In 1947, he married Josephine, who died in 1988.

Survivors include two sons, Joseph of Williamsville and Christopher of the Town of Tonawanda; two daughters, Katherine Arena and Deborah Schihl, both of the Town of Tonawanda; a brother, Fred of Eggerstville; a sister, Eleanor Rinaldo of the Town of Tonawanda; and 11 grandchildren.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday in SS. Peter and Paul Catholic Church, 5480 Main St., Williamsville.

Burial will be in Mount Olivet Cemetery, Town of Tonawanda.

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