Obituary of Leo Butera
Leo was the first of three sons born to parents Angelo and Carmella Butera. He was raised in a small home with his brothers in a quiet neighborhood in Blasdell, NY. A neighborhood that was to bring lifelong friendships and stories that would last for many years to come. Being that there were few years that divided Leo from his siblings in age, Leo, Angelo, and Anthony were close from the start and remained that way throughout the years. It was during the year of 1976 when Leo met his wife Kathy while she was working at Twin Fair. It was there that he asked her out on a date. The pair met up at a local playground for a game of tennis, attended a birthday party, and then ended the evening out at the lake. The couple was married the following winter and so their story began. There were countless things in life that made Leo proud. Of them, his children and grandchildren, family and friends, his full head of salt and pepper hair, his childhood paper route, and of course the pride of his Sicilian heritage. Some of his family traditions have been the source of confusion amongst his children and others over the years, especially when family dynamics were asked to be explained. As to him, everyone was family. Close friends were addressed by his children as aunt, uncle, and cousin. Leo, too, was often referred to as ‘Uncle Leo’, ‘Cousin Leo’, or ‘Papa Leo’ by those whom viewed him as such and everyone knew that you never wanted to upset Papa Leo. Leo’s parents were fluent in Italian, however, the brothers were never taught to speak their parent’s native tongue. This, of course, did not deter Leo from creating his own version of the Italian language. Italian curse words blended with English and gibberish became Leo’s trademark to many. When Leo was not busy inventing new languages, storytelling, or nicknaming those around him, he enjoyed coining catchphrases such as ‘na nite’ and ‘eyes go dark’ when attempting to put his restless grandchildren to sleep. Leo was undeniably proud of each of his six children. He reminisced of his younger years coaching the boys with Angelo and attending school functions and field trips with the girls. If you attended an event, beware, there is a good chance that it was captured by Leo and his twenty-pound video recorder on VHS. In his later years, following retirement from the NYS Department of Taxation and Finance, Leo turned his focus onto his grandchildren and their favorite activities. He loved spending time with them as well as watching them grow. It is true that Papa Leo was frequently caught trading dollar bills with his grandchildren in lieu of ice chips and cups of water. Aside from the love of his family and friends, anyone who knew Leo knows of his love of gambling and most anything food. It has been told that sticks of pepperoni have gone missing during the wee hours of the night. During the afternoon hours of October 8, 2020, Leo was called to God and reunited with the many family members and friends that passed before him. He unexpectedly and peacefully left this earth while doing another one of his favorite things; napping in his chair. Frank Sinatra was one of Leo’s favorite old-time artists and his lyrics tell his ending best: “For what is a man, what has he got? If not himself, then he has naught To say the things he truly feels And not the words of one who kneels The record shows I took the blows And did it my way Yes, it was my way” May He Rest In Peace. Butera, Sr., Leo October 8, 2020 of Hamburg, NY. Beloved husband of Kathleen (nee Varga) Butera; devoted father of Nicole, Kristin, Toni (Jordan) Lambert, Leo, Jr. (Lindsay), Matthew, and Ashley Butera; cherished grandfather of Dominic, Riley, Lexi, Jordan, Jr., Aubrey, Macie, Hailey, and Leo; dear brother of Anthony (Mary) and late Angelo (Sally) Butera; also survived by many close friends and family. Friends received on Wednesday from 4 – 8 PM at LAKESIDE MEMORIAL FUNERAL HOME, INC. 4199 Lake Shore Rd. (corner Camp Rd. & Rte. 5) Hamburg, NY 716-627-2919. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held Thursday at 10 AM at SS Peter & Paul Roman Catholic Church, Hamburg, NY. Please assemble at church. In consideration for the health and safety of the family and attendees, please wear a facial covering and maintain social distance at all times. Capacity restrictions may delay entry. Online condolences at www.LakesideFuneralHome.com. Leo was a member of the Sons of the American Legion Newell - Faulkner Post #880.
4:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Wednesday, October 14, 2020
Lakeside Memorial Funeral Home, Inc. - Hamburg, NY
4199 Lake Shore Road
Hamburg, New York, United States