MANCHESTER, NH – George “Butch” Joseph, 84, of Manchester, passed away peacefully on Saturday, April 21 surrounded by his family.
He was born December 31, 1933, to Albanian immigrants, Mitty and Kleanthi Joseph. He was predeceased by sisters Nora, Patricia, Louise, Chrysanthi and Virginia, and brother Joseph. He married his high school sweetheart, Jane Nita Joseph, on May 29, 1955. He leaves behind the love of his life, Jane, as well as his family; Greg and Lynne Joseph, Kim and Keith Marshall, Gary Joseph and Jill Cunningham, Johnna and John Langella, and Lynne Joseph and Dona Boardman. The greatest joys of his life were his grandchildren: Matt, Allie, Holly, Sarah, Emily, Abby, Vinny, Katie, Heather and great-grandchildren, Calvin, Violet, Penelope, Karly, Dylan, Lewis, Auden, Bennett and Colin.
Butch graduated from Central High School and then went on to graduate from Keene State teachers college with a B.A. in education. He received his Master’s degree at Rivier College – a feat that took him eight years to complete while growing his young family and working two jobs.
There was no one more patriotic than Butch. He served four years in the U.S. Navy as a weatherman on the USS Estes. He made lifelong friends while stationed in California and Japan, and kept in touch with his brothers in arms until his passing. During his time as a coach, Butch made sure his players understood the importance of saluting the American flag during the National Anthem.
Butch spent much of his career serving youth in the community as a teacher, guidance counselor and assistant principal. As a child of immigrants, Butch understood the transformative nature of education and was committed to providing opportunities to every student who walked into his office. Long after he retired, Butch continued to receive letters from former students thanking him for his support and guidance.
Butch was well known for his work as a coach, referee, athletic director, and mentor. He served as the director of the Manchester Babe Ruth League from 1976 to 1996 and was instrumental in bringing the Babe Ruth World Series to Manchester twice during his involvement with the league. Butch gave of himself freely, whether through his time in coaching, or in quietly purchasing equipment for youth who would otherwise not be able to participate.
Above all, “Pup” was the number one fan to every member of his family. No matter the occasion – from games to performances and everything in between. Win, lose, or draw he was always in the front row, cheering the loudest, and walking away the proudest. There will forever be an empty seat in the stands.
Jane and her children would like to extend a heartfelt “thank you” to the staff of St. Teresa Rehabilitation and Nursing Center for the expert and compassionate care given to Butch during his short stay.
The family will receive visitors Sunday, April 29 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Phaneuf Funeral Home, 243 Hanover Street in Manchester. A Memorial service will begin at 3 p.m. in the funeral home chapel.
A scholarship fund has been established in Butch’s honor. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to: Members First Credit Union c/o the George Butch Joseph Scholarship Fund, PO Box 896, Manchester, NH 03105.
Phaneuf Funeral Homes & Crematorium is assisting the family with arrangements. For more information or to leave a message of condolence please go to www.phaneuf.net.