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Jo Butterfield

June 24, 1938 October 30, 2015
Jo Butterfield
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Obituary for Jo Butterfield

Jo Butterfield, age 77, passed away Friday, Oct. 30 inside her Oakland County home with family by her side. Born June 24, 1938 in the Upper Peninsula village of Calumet, Jo and her family moved to the Detroit area where she graduated from Cass Tech High School in 1956. After high school she took a job as a lab technician at Difco Laboratories where she met a colleague named Bill Butterfield. The two began dating and were married in 1960. Two daughters, Kathy and Linda, were born within six years, and Jo returned to school in the early 1970s. She earned a bachelor degree in sociology from Oakland University in 1974 and maintained a lifelong interest in world cultures that saw her travel the globe from Asia to the Middle East, the Antipodes to the Hebrides.

Jo began working for Pontiac-based dentist Dr. James Chang in 1970s and eventually spent more than 40 years as a dental assistant, office manager and very familiar voice on the phone to generations of Dr. Chang’s patients. Away from the office, she was a homebody and a globetrotter. She owned a home in Oakland County for over 35 years and was a member of the public libraries in Oxford, Lake Orion and Ortonville. Jo enjoyed making friends, walking her dog, working out at the Gym in Lake Orion, tending to her yard, reading, listening to music and dining at Red Knapps, The Nugget, Tim Hortons, or any place that served a good cup of coffee.

Jo’s life was full of travel. There was travel by air, car, boat, bike, and horseback and stays in tents, trailers, hostels, cruise ships, houseboats, villas, and chateaus! She visited nearly every state in the U.S. and was especially drawn to National Parks, historic sites, battlefields and art museums. She was curious about world cultures and loved visiting Turkey, China, Italy, Australia, England, Ecuador, Mexico, Scotland and many, many other places. Friends dubbed Jo a “gypsy” – a moniker she gladly accepted.

Jo was a very fun-loving and adventurous Finlander who enjoyed a full life before a cancer diagnosis seven months ago changed that life. She is survived and will be very sorely missed by her daughters Kathy Norton (Bob) and Linda Butterfield (Jeff); her grandchildren, Jon, Katie, and Austin; her brothers, Mike Somero (Nancy) and Mark Somero; her dog, Daisy; and all of her friends. She was preceded in death by her husband, Bill, and by her parents, Leonard and Katie Somero.

A 'Celebration of Life' will be held on November 21, 2015 at 1:00pm at Palazzo di Bocce. Arrangements for cremation entrusted to Lynch & Sons Funeral Directors, Oxford.

Previous Events

Celebration of Life




1:00 PM 11/21/2015 1:00:00 PM
Palazzo di Bocce

4291 S. Lapeer Rd
Orion, MI

Palazzo di Bocce
4291 S. Lapeer Rd Orion MI
United States

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