Haymarket Center

Haymarket Loses a Dear Friend

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The mission of Haymarket Center is to aid people with substance use disorders in their recovery by providing comprehensive behavioral health solutions.

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We regret to announce the passing of John M. Butler.  Mr. Butler was born in Brooklyn, New York and received Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from St. John’s University in New York and New York University, respectively.  He had been on the board of Haymarket Center and its predecessor, The McDermott Foundation, since 1990.


The following is an excerpt about Mr. Butler from the book, “Father Mac – The Life and Times of Ignatius D. McDermott, Co-Founder of Chicago’s Famed Haymarket Center” by Thomas F. Roeser:


Working with Monsignor McDermott, Jack Whalen brought in a priceless resource: not just money, but a man with sophisticated experience in finance.  It began when Monsignor McDermott told Mr. Whalen simply, “A man has called who wants to give money.  I’d like you to talk to him.”  This man was John Butler, a recently retired top financial officer with the Chicago Northwestern Railroad.  Whalen visited with Butler, who had been donation $2,000 here and $5,000 there.  Butler was looking for a cause to give more money to.  Whalen took him on a tour of the ravaged Haymarket House, pointing out what it could ultimately be.  Butler joined the board and became Chief Financial Officer of McDermott Foundation, volunteering his time and ruling on important financial decisions.


As a member of the board of Haymarket Center, Mr. Butler served as a voluntary Vice President and Chairman of the Finance Committee.  He was instrumental in acquiring land and buildings for Haymarket Center.  One of his accomplishments was to renegotiate the bank loan for Haymarket’s properties.  His efforts saved tens of thousands of dollars in interest payments.  These are but a few of the many contributions that Mr. Butler has been involved in.  We are grateful to his family for allowing him to be an intricate part of the history of Haymarket Center.


Haymarket Center will forever be grateful for all the good work he did for the people we are privileged to serve.  His distinguished service and passion for the mission and vision set forth by our founder Monsignor Ignatius McDermott always will be remembered as an example of a person’s whose commitment serves as an example of an individual who truly wants to do God’s work.

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