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Marsha Lynn Davis Butler of Harrisburg

updated: 7/15/2017 12:15 PM

HARRISBURG -- Marsha Lynn Davis Butler passed to glory on July 12, 2017.

Marsha was born March 28, 1947, in Harrisburg to James E. and Umeka (Stringer) Davis. She married Oliver Dean Butler on Nov. 27, 1965.

Within the year, she saw the birth of her first child and sent her husband off to war. She stood faithfully with him until his return 12 months later. They were married 51 years.

Marsha was a graduate of Harrisburg Township High School, class of '65, and an optician for much of her working life. She and Oliver eventually had four children, all girls, and nine grandchildren.

She was an active member of Saline Ridge Missionary Baptist Church for over 45 years, a board member of the Baptist Children's Home and Family Services in Carmi, secretary of Hillcrest Baptist Camp, and a lifelong resident of Harrisburg. She and Oliver were blessed with many dear friends.

Marsha was beautiful, strong and loyal. She loved fiercely and truly and was generous beyond measure. Faith and family were her highest devotions. She loved the Lord with all of her heart and every soul He sent her way.

She traveled the world, serving orphans and widows and the oppressed and suffering. She battled cancer for six years with courage, grace and a stubborn perseverance. She often cared for and blessed her caregivers as much as they cared for and blessed her.

Cancer stole more from Marsha than it has from most, but she never gave in to despair. She lived with the hope that does not disappoint, because the love of God had truly been poured out in her heart, and she showered that love freely on others. (Romans 5:5)

She was preceded in death by her parents; sister, Patricia Ann Davis; brother, James David Davis; nephew, Stuart Davis; sister-in-law, Abigail Butler Van Zant; and daughter, Dacy Ellen Butler Womack Gray.

Survivors include her devoted husband, Oliver, who cared for her tenderly and faithfully throughout her illness; daughters, Stephanie Lynn (Dave) Valadez, Melissa Raye (Adam) Halcom and Merissa Kaye (Greg) Ury; grandchildren, Alexis Faith Womack, Olivia Grace (C.J.) Sherrod, Pvt. Christopher Ian Triplett, Dalton Bradley Gray, Carlos James Valadez, Zachary Edmund Ury, Terry Lynn Janssen III, Kidist "Kiki" Lynn Valadez and Cody Dean Ury; sister, Becky Sue (Bobby) Staley; brother, James Edward Davis II; brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, Jonah and Sharon Butler, Barney and Brenda Butler and Ernie Van Zant; and many nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews.

Funeral services will be at noon Saturday, July 15, in Saline Ridge Missionary Baptist Church, 205 Pierson Hill Road, in Harrisburg. Burial will immediately follow in Saline Ridge cemetery.

Visitation will be from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, July 14, at Reed Funeral Chapel, 503 E. Sloan St., in Harrisburg and 10 a.m. to noon Saturday at the church.

Memorial contributions may be made in her honor to Saline Ridge Missionary Baptist Church or Baptist Children's Home and Family Services, 949 County Road 1300 N, Carmi, IL 62821.