Ray Butler

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Graduation Year




Interview Date


D. Julian

Call Number

RE1 UOG A1340168


Ray Butler interview


Dick Julian (00:01):
This is an interview with Dr. Ray Butler, OVC54, conducted by Dr. Dick Julian, OVC52, on April 14, 2009 for the University of Guelph Alumni Association Alumni-in-Action Oral History Project. Dr. Butler, we'll start first by asking you wh- where you were born and where you grew up, some of your family background, and perhaps you could tell us where you received your primary and secondary education.

Ray Butler (00:33):
Well, I was, I'm a native of Winnipeg, Manitoba, uh, born in 1931. I took my, uh, early ed- education from grade one to grade seven at Greenway School in Winnipeg. Grade seven, eight, and nine, we were at, uh, Isaac Brock, and then I did finish my high school at, uh, Daniel Mack Institute in Winnipeg, and then, I took, well, from there I didn't take, uh, grade 12. At th- in those days, y- yo- your high school went on to, to grade 12, but instead I went to the University of Manitoba and took first-year agriculture.

Dick Julian (01:15):
So that was the reason you chose OVC, was because you had some background in agriculture then?

Ray Butler (01:19):
Well, I was prompted to go into vet medicine when I was about 13 years old, and I worked for a, a veterinarian in Winnipeg. And, uh, of course, most of the work we did there was small animal, but anytime he got us a large animal call, I was just delighted to go with him. And so we-

Dick Julian (01:39):
So you [crosstalk] were interested in large animals right from the beginning?

Ray Butler (01:42):
Oh, yes. More so than small, yeah.

Dick Julian (01:46):
So, the factors that influenced you to come to c- university and to the OVC was your mother, your father, or why? It was just a personal interest?

Ray Butler (01:55):
No. Yeah, it was just a personal interest. Uh, it all started with a, actually a, a litter of English Setter pups, uh, that one of our neighbors had and I'd be al- al- always over with him. And he, uh, he said to me, uh, "You know, you should be a vet.", and, uh, this was when I was about 13 years old. He says, "You go down to Dr. Lewis and, and tell him that.", so I did. And-

Dick Julian (02:19):
Yeah, that's an interesting story-

Ray Butler (02:21):

Dick Julian (02:21):
About how you become a veterinarian.

Ray Butler (02:23):
Well, the first thing he d- had me do was mow his lawns. (laughs). But eventually, I was with him for quite a while.

Dick Julian (02:30):
So, you'd go by train from Winnipeg to Guelph?

Ray Butler (02:33):
Uh, yes, that's right. Uh, well, there's another story. This is, was when I first when down, I was going to go by train and then we found out the bus was cheaper, so fine, I went and bought a bus ticket and never thought any. As we approached the border, there was a, all the people started to get out there. P- uh, Pat and I, wasn't passports in those days, but they had certificates to get in. I had nothing. So we got to the border and the fellow said, "Well, wh- where's all your documentation?" I said, "I haven't got any." And he says, "Well, when you have a toothache, where do you go?" I said, "The dentist." Well, he says, "When you go into the United States, where do you go?" Wait for it. And I said, "Well, you should have got all this.", and, oh, he just gave me a hard time, but eventually we got through and went down through Chicago and, uh, don't want to prolong this anymore, and then up, uh, through Detroit and then to, to Guelph. Yeah. (laughs).

Dick Julian (03:30):
Yeah, but still an interesting story.

Ray Butler (03:32):
Yeah. (laughs).

Dick Julian (03:33):
So, what did you find when you came to Guelph?

Ray Butler (03:36):
Oh, I was quite impressed with it. Uh, I was, uh, surrounded by my bags there, and there was another fellow that looked very much like me, and he was going to the vet college, too, Bob Williams.

Ray Butler (03:50):
And, uh, we eventually roomed, uh, together there-

Dick Julian (03:55):
He was going into first year?

Ray Butler (03:57):
Through the, through the five years.

Dick Julian (03:57):
Uh-huh (affirmative).

Ray Butler (03:57):
Yeah, that's right. Yep.

Dick Julian (03:57):
He was going into first year.

Ray Butler (03:59):
And he eventually practiced in, uh, in, uh, Alberta.

Dick Julian (04:00):
So, you would've gone into the administration building?

Ray Butler (04:05):

Dick Julian (04:05):
Johnson Hall.

Ray Butler (04:05):
Johnson Hall is where we stayed first. Oh, i- we were on the ground floor the first year.

Dick Julian (04:12):
Were you?

Ray Butler (04:12):

Dick Julian (04:12):
I thought all first years went in the fourth floor.

Ray Butler (04:15):
Uh, no. We, we started th- well maybe, but there was, could have been some overflow and that's why we were down there. M- most of ours were up on, uh-

Dick Julian (04:22):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (04:23):
As I recall, third floor-

Dick Julian (04:24):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (04:24):
But yeah.

Dick Julian (04:26):
All right. And so, what did you think about the residents and the food and what-

Ray Butler (04:30):
Oh, great. I thought it was really, really great. Yeah.

Dick Julian (04:33):
They fed you well?

Ray Butler (04:33):
Yeah, fed us well, other than on Thursdays because, uh, apparently, they'd been doing some research on sheep and, uh, as they'd use these animals up, they'd wind up in, in Creelman Hall and so mutton was the menu on Thursdays. Yeah.

Dick Julian (04:49):
And so, how did first year go in the vet school?

Ray Butler (04:51):
Uh, it was tough. Uh, yeah, I, uh, I wasn't the star in the class. That's for sure. But we managed to, uh, avoid, uh, flunking out as many did in those days, as you know and-

Dick Julian (05:03):
Yeah, yeah.

Ray Butler (05:05):
And, uh, but, uh, yeah, uh, I certainly enjoyed it.

Dick Julian (05:07):
Were there courses you enjoyed more than others in first year?

Ray Butler (05:10):
Oh, thinking back, uh, uh, no, and I have a hard time saying I, I would really prefer that. I, I really enjoyed the classes. Yeah.

Dick Julian (05:19):
The classes. And did you take part in extracurricular activities while you were there?

Ray Butler (05:23):
I, I was quite active in, uh, sports.

Dick Julian (05:26):

Ray Butler (05:27):
And, uh, uh, and, uh, won a, a trophy, a year '49 trophy for, for that. Yeah.

Dick Julian (05:34):
And so what, in what areas were you active?

Ray Butler (05:36):
Oh, well, depending on the season, of course.

Dick Julian (05:38):

Ray Butler (05:38):
Uh, we'd start with, uh, soccer and-

Dick Julian (05:41):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (05:42):
And, uh, and then even wrestling. Uh, that's another story that goes on, but, uh-

Dick Julian (05:48):
Well, I have an interview from Dr. Brightwell here.

Ray Butler (05:50):
Yes, Harry was [crosstalk].

Dick Julian (05:51):
And Harry was his-

Ray Butler (05:51):

Dick Julian (05:52):
Top wrestler. Yes.

Ray Butler (05:52):
Yeah, yeah, yeah. He was c- intercollegiate.

Dick Julian (05:55):
Uh-huh (affirmative).

Ray Butler (05:56):
Yeah. No, they used to, they had a very strong intermural program at Guelph-

Dick Julian (05:59):
Uh-huh (affirmative).

Ray Butler (06:00):
Headed up by Bill Mitchell.

Dick Julian (06:01):

Ray Butler (06:01):
And, uh, they called it The Assault of Arms and it was boxing and wrestling, (laughs) this kind of stuff. And we had a, a fellow in our class that just missed being Olympic, an Olympic wrestler for the, uh, the U.S., Bill Gray.

Dick Julian (06:16):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (06:17):
And so, he talked a lot of us into going there. We laughed because we knew nothing about it.

Dick Julian (06:19):
So, any of the professors at the university that you, uh, liked more than others?

Ray Butler (06:28):
Oh, uh, well, they were all different, uh, and, uh, I, I can't say there were any that I, I didn't get along with. Yeah, we, we were quite happy with...

Dick Julian (06:40):
So, uh, what sort of, uh, hijinks did your class get into?

Ray Butler (06:45):
Oh, uh, I'm not sure you want to know that, Dick, but, uh, uh, we, we, well, the first thing that comes to mind, we, uh, arranged a trip to Cornell. Uh, the class went down there and, uh, we had hired a bus and away we went. And I can, uh, when we got down there, we, they took us in the frat, frat house there. We didn't have a, uh, the OTS wasn't, uh, Omega Tau Sigma. It wasn't operating at Guelph at that time and I think it was maybe because of the trip when we head down there, and eventually it, it did get established.

Dick Julian (07:20):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (07:21):
But, uh, I recall it, they called it the, the Schooner Race, and they, they'd, you'd get up your four best beer drinkers and, uh, the number two man couldn't start til the first man put his pint down, and then you'd go. But they didn't know is they'd been, they spiked the (laughs) the drinks for our team with I don't know what, but it was hard liquor of some sort, so I'd rather just stop right there.

Dick Julian (07:46):
(laughs). Right. So, you were satisfied with the training you had there?

Ray Butler (07:52):
Oh, I, yeah. In retrospect, I think we had a n- really excellent, uh, training. Yeah.

Dick Julian (07:57):
And it suited you to your practice-

Ray Butler (07:59):

Dick Julian (07:59):
When you came back to Manitoba?

Ray Butler (08:00):
Uh, that's right. I, uh, you didn't have all the answers for sure-

Dick Julian (08:02):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (08:02):
But at least you had a good basic-

Dick Julian (08:05):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (08:06):
And, uh, you know, the interaction with disease and a healthy animal, and then we, uh, yeah, knowing.

Dick Julian (08:12):
So, perhaps you could tell us a little bit about coming back to Manitoba and going into veterinary practice.

Ray Butler (08:19):
Yeah. My original plan was to go to, uh, Brandon, Manitoba, primarily because there was only veterinarian there and he was getting on in year. And, uh, of course, in, in those days, uh, you just had to talk to your class because that was the only English speaking-

Dick Julian (08:36):
Uh-huh (affirmative).

Ray Butler (08:37):
G- graduates in, in Saskatoon, so I said I was going to go to Brandon. And, lo and behold, Herb Lyman, who was graduate, I'd have to guess, maybe a year '50, came back in j- in, uh, uh, January of, of '54 and went to Brandon. Well, of course, everything changed then. So, I didn't know where I was going to go. Red Frazier, a close friend and-

Dick Julian (09:00):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (09:00):
Eventually my best man when I was married, uh, said to me, "Well, uh, I had looked Dauphin, it's a pretty good place to go, uh, but I've decided I, I'm going to go Hamiota."

Dick Julian (09:11):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (09:13):
So I said, "Would you mind if I went to Dauphin?" He said, "No." He said, uh, and so I said and Doreen, uh, we, uh, my girl, uh, girlfriend at that time, we were never going to get married, we went to check Brandon out and thought it would be all right, and then when this happened, well, yeah, I went to Dauphin and when I drove into the town, that was the, uh, first time I ever saw it. (laughs). And we spent, uh, 14 years there then.

Dick Julian (09:45):
So, you went to Dauphin, uh, to practice alone in a single-

Ray Butler (09:49):
Exactly, right.

Dick Julian (09:50):
Mixed practice.

Ray Butler (09:50):
Yeah, very much mixed. Yeah.

Dick Julian (09:52):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (09:53):

Dick Julian (09:54):
So h- how much, what percentage would have been small animal.

Ray Butler (09:57):
Well, I'd, uh, uh, when we were talking about it in terms of time, I suppose, uh, 50-50, something like that-

Dick Julian (10:05):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (10:05):
Or a very large area. It went, extended right from Lake Manitoba to, uh, well, when the, the veterinarian left [inaudible] right to the Saskatchewan border.

Dick Julian (10:15):

Ray Butler (10:15):

Dick Julian (10:16):
So, was the large animal practice mixed as well?

Ray Butler (10:19):
Uh, yeah, but primarily, uh, beef.

Dick Julian (10:20):

Ray Butler (10:20):
Primarily beef, but, uh, Dauphin had its own p- milk processing plant so we had, uh, oh, about 15 herds that shipped milk-

Dick Julian (10:33):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (10:33):
To the, the, the dairy there, Crew's Dairy. Yeah.

Dick Julian (10:34):
No swine or horses at all?

Ray Butler (10:36):
Oh, yeah, swine and some horses, yeah. Yeah, but-

Dick Julian (10:38):
They'd still be using horses on the farm in some places.

Ray Butler (10:41):
Oh, they were just going out at that time.

Dick Julian (10:41):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (10:41):

Dick Julian (10:45):
So, what can you tell us about some of the interesting things that happened at Dauphin?

Ray Butler (10:49):
Well, when, uh, I practiced for, uh, three years and then was joined by Jim Smart.

Dick Julian (10:55):

Ray Butler (10:55):
And, uh, and, uh, and then later, again, by with, it was a three-person practice with, uh, Bob Duncan-

Dick Julian (11:03):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (11:04):
A '63 year grad.

Dick Julian (11:06):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (11:06):
Jim graduated in '57. Uh, oh, things that come to mind is, uh, uh, rabies was virtually unheard of, at least in domestic animals. I remember one time we had a fellow brought a, a calf in, and it was in the summertime, and I was driving back out from town and, and this calf was b- the bimodal, uh, I'm voicing, you know, the "uh, and, uh" before I got out, I said, "Geez, I, I'd have to think rabies." So, we went in and it was nondescript. Uh, I can't recall now just, uh, w- how we handled it, but I said to the, uh, the farmer, "Now, if this calf dies for sure, let us know." So, uh, that afternoon he called and said, "Yeah, that calf's dead." So I phoned, uh, Ross Reid, who was the health of animals veterinarian, and we went out and he was interested in getting the head, of course, and I was, just wanted to do a postmortem.

Ray Butler (12:12):
So, he was working up at the fr- the front end, and (laughs) the, uh, I was taking the lungs out and dropped the, the plug and it, down in the, the, in the cavity and it splashed thoracic fluid into Ross's eye. Geez. And (laughs) and then when I t- I used double gloves and I took them off and, uh, lo and behold, there was a hole in one of them. And so, uh, we went to the doctor and, and the doctor was a close friend of mine, uh, uh, the name will come to me. Uh, uh, Cam Colkine, and he said, "Well, for sure." Uh, he says, "If the thing's positive, r- r- Reid is going to get his belly full of needles." And he said, "And it just so happened there's a visitor from the states here. He's an authority on uh, nerve and viral diseases. I'm going to phone him at his hotel." So I, I wasn't party to the conversation, but I gather he said to him, "Well, does this fellow know what rabies is like?" Uh, he says, "Yeah." "Does he like to worry?" He says, "Yeah, he likes to worry." And he says, "You better give him the injection, too." (laughs). Yeah.

Dick Julian (13:28):

Ray Butler (13:30):
I'm getting ahead of the story, of course, because-

Dick Julian (13:31):

Ray Butler (13:31):
It turned out it was-

Dick Julian (13:32):
It was positive.

Ray Butler (13:33):
Positive. Yeah. They picked up the negri bodies.

Dick Julian (13:34):
And that was the first case of rabies you'd seen?

Ray Butler (13:37):
Yeah, yeah.

Dick Julian (13:37):

Ray Butler (13:38):
Yeah, yeah.

Dick Julian (13:38):
And you saw a lot more after that?

Ray Butler (13:41):
Not a lot, no.

Dick Julian (13:42):

Ray Butler (13:42):
Uh, no, I only saw, I can think of one, was a, another story.

Dick Julian (13:47):
Uh-huh (affirmative).

Ray Butler (13:48):
Uh, by that time, Bob Duncan had phoned us and, and there was, uh, this dog came in, uh, having problems swallowing. And we, we should have been treating to rabies at the time, but we didn't, and all three of us happened to be in the clinic at the time, so we were without any gloves on. We were peering down the throat and so never, never thought of rabies til, uh, uh, the next morning.

Dick Julian (14:11):

Ray Butler (14:12):
We looked at the do- the dog and it had, uh, photophobia, which is pretty well characteristic. They sent the head in. It was positive. So at 5:00 every, every afternoon, we'd troop down and get a shot, and Jim was quite thin, a very thin fellow at that time, and he ran out of belly to put needles in because you do get-

Dick Julian (14:32):

Ray Butler (14:32):
Quite a reaction from the, yeah, so.

Dick Julian (14:34):
But you had been vaccinated previously.

Ray Butler (14:36):
No. No, no.

Dick Julian (14:37):
Well, you hadn't taken it on the.

Ray Butler (14:39):
Well, oh pardon me, I had, yes. Yeah-

Dick Julian (14:40):

Ray Butler (14:40):
Sometime earlier, but they treated us all the same. Yeah.

Dick Julian (14:44):
You took it a second time?

Ray Butler (14:45):

Dick Julian (14:45):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (14:45):
Yeah. I don't know, maybe n- nowadays they probably, uh, approach it a little differently.

Dick Julian (14:51):
At, at what time did you start doing cesareans on dairy cattle?

Ray Butler (14:54):
All right. The first, uh, the first, uh, when I, when I got there that I, the, the, the veterinarian that was there wasn't doing cesareans and, uh, so it, uh, was a bit of a practice builder for us.

Dick Julian (15:08):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (15:09):
And, uh, yeah, we, we, we [crosstalk].

Dick Julian (15:12):
Because that was something that we got very little training in the-

Ray Butler (15:13):

Dick Julian (15:14):
University on cesareans.

Ray Butler (15:14):
Yeah. Well, I remember initially they were doing them on the right flank, which is-

Dick Julian (15:19):

Ray Butler (15:19):
The last thing you want to do.

Dick Julian (15:19):

Ray Butler (15:22):
And, uh, and, (laughs) and then we, uh. Yeah, yeah, no, we, uh, had fairly good success with it.

Dick Julian (15:28):

Ray Butler (15:28):

Dick Julian (15:29):
So, any other experiences in practice that stand out?

Ray Butler (15:34):
Oh, well, uh, an interesting part of our practice was, of course, the calf with vaccination from brucellosis.

Dick Julian (15:39):

Ray Butler (15:40):
And the, um, uh, we'd, as I mentioned, the, the district was quite large and we'd actually go across Lake Manitoba to some herds. If you look at, uh, Lake Manitoba, they, there are points that come down from the north-

Dick Julian (15:56):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (15:57):
And on most of those points, there'd be a, a farmer who need, and they'd have large herds for that time, you know-

Dick Julian (16:03):

Ray Butler (16:03):
A couple of hundred head of cows. So, we'd have to go across the ice to vaccinate these calves in the fall.

Dick Julian (16:10):
Yes. (laughs)

Ray Butler (16:11):
And that's interesting, especially your first trip. You're going along and you'd hear, crack, and the, usually, I'd have a rancher with me, of course, to, you know? And he'd go "don't worry. That's a, that's, that's an ice crack, that's a ice crack." (laughs). Yeah, so, you know, that, that was quite interesting. Yeah. No, it was, I really, uh, enjoyed practice. Yeah.

Dick Julian (16:33):
So, uh, after 13 years, you say-

Ray Butler (16:35):

Dick Julian (16:36):
You, you changed.

Ray Butler (16:37):
Yeah, that's right. It, uh, and, you know, thinking back, what was the big thing? The big thing, of course, was the college was opening up here. And, uh, uh, I thought, well, if I'm ever going to make a move, now is the time. And, uh, so, uh, Larry Smith, uh, actually w- was the dean and we talked to him about it, and, and, he said they were going to have a continuing education section, uh, at the college. And, uh, so I applied and, uh, he, he called me up and said, "Well, we'd like you to come over and have a little chat."

Ray Butler (17:14):
So, uh, I, I went over and, uh, Doreen came with me and, and, and, uh, what really startled me is his little chat was actually a lecture to a whole 50 people. (laughs). We just, uh, turned the corner in the room and I thought maybe we'd be going into a, a, a lounge or something like that. And so, I, uh, that really had threw me, but, uh, uh, they saw something, I guess, that I didn't and we, uh, I, I was hired on then to head up the continuing education.

Dick Julian (17:46):
So, how big was the faculty at that time?

Ray Butler (17:48):
Have to guess, uh, I'm thinking about a picture that was taken. Oh, maybe 25 or 30.

Dick Julian (17:55):

Ray Butler (17:56):

Dick Julian (17:57):
And, uh, who was in the large animal clinic then?

Ray Butler (18:00):
Well, Otto [inaudible]. Well, Red Frazier was the head of the clinic and then, at that time, they didn't have it broken down into small animal/large animal.

Dick Julian (18:10):

Ray Butler (18:10):
It was just, it was called the Department of Clinical Studies and Red Frazier headed that up. Yeah.

Dick Julian (18:17):
And at that time, Otto would be there?

Ray Butler (18:20):
Otto was there. Uh, I'm trying to think. No, who [crosstalk].

Dick Julian (18:22):
Was, was Gavin Hamilton, Dr. Hamilton there at that time?

Ray Butler (18:25):
Uh, uh, well, he, he was hired on, but he, uh, opted to go down to, uh, uh, Colorado and took a PhD there. And so, he was away in that early time. Yeah.

Dick Julian (18:37):
And so, did you get an opportunity while you were there to do graduate work?

Ray Butler (18:41):
Yes. Uh, that was one of the, uh, conditions was that I would have to take a, a masters in continuing education. So-

Dick Julian (18:49):
And where d- where?

Ray Butler (18:50):
I took it h- I took it at the college.

Dick Julian (18:51):
All right.

Ray Butler (18:53):
So, uh, it took a little longer, but we-

Dick Julian (18:55):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (18:57):
Take a, a course at intersection, a course at summer school, and then, uh, three course during the year, and have to take extra courses because it was a, not a discipline that, uh-

Dick Julian (19:06):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (19:06):
I was in, of course, and had to, had to-

Dick Julian (19:09):
And so, was this something that you enjoyed doing-

Ray Butler (19:12):

Dick Julian (19:12):
After you got into it?

Ray Butler (19:13):
Oh, very much so. Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Dick Julian (19:13):
And, uh, how many people did you have with you in the department?

Ray Butler (19:18):
Oh, d- uh, I was the only veterinarian and then we had a secretary.

Dick Julian (19:27):
Uh-huh (affirmative).

Ray Butler (19:27):
Yeah. Yeah.

Dick Julian (19:27):
So, how did you-

Ray Butler (19:27):
And, and eventually, yeah, p- Paul Greeno, uh, joined us.

Dick Julian (19:30):
Yeah, I know him well.

Ray Butler (19:30):

Dick Julian (19:32):
So, how did you interact with students in that, uh, department?

Ray Butler (19:36):
Uh, I wasn't, uh, not that much really. It was mostly organizing courses and, and so on. And, and, uh, but I would, uh, uh, have to give a, a class.

Dick Julian (19:45):

Ray Butler (19:46):

Dick Julian (19:47):
So, what, uh, what stands out in your mind about the years you spent at the Western College?

Ray Butler (19:52):
Oh, uh, it, it went well. The, the early years, of course, uh, uh, Larry was the dean, Ole was, uh, head of pathology, and it w- it was a great, uh, like a bunch of missionaries there because it was a, everybody was new to the job. And, and, uh-

Dick Julian (20:16):
I've heard a lot from the department of pathology about these canoe trips. Uh, did you ever get involved in that?

Ray Butler (20:21):
No, I never go involved with that. Yeah.

Dick Julian (20:22):
Oh, all right, then.

Ray Butler (20:22):
No, they were the canoe ships that was Ole who would be involved with that, and the ski trips. Yeah.

Dick Julian (20:27):
Oh, right.

Ray Butler (20:28):
I did, uh, one or two.

Dick Julian (20:28):
You didn't never get into that part?

Ray Butler (20:29):
I was smart enough to stay away from it, but from both of them actually because they, uh, the ones that went skiing usually came home with broken limbs and, yeah. (laughs).

Dick Julian (20:39):
So, does anything else stand out in, in your college life?

Ray Butler (20:41):
Well, they used to have the, the, uh, any time, uh, somebody new joined, we'd usually have a barbecue out at, uh-

Dick Julian (20:48):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (20:48):
A farm and, uh, these were great. There's was a, uh, and Larry was a, oh, just, I can't say enough about him as a, a person to put things together.

Dick Julian (20:59):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (21:01):
He, uh, he, really, uh, people oriented, if I can put it that way. And, uh, but he, he could ma- manage things, too. We used to say about Larry is that he could tell you to go to hell in such a way that you look forward to the trip.

Dick Julian (21:16):

Ray Butler (21:16):

Dick Julian (21:19):
Yes, Larry taught us pathology and he was just a great guy.

Ray Butler (21:23):
Yeah, yeah, he really was. And he was the right man at the right time.

Dick Julian (21:27):
So, uh, what other deans were in the Western College while you were on faculty?

Ray Butler (21:32):
Well, there was Ole, there was, uh, Larry.

Dick Julian (21:34):
Dr. Nielsen.

Ray Butler (21:35):
Dr. Nielsen, that's right. And then, Dr. um, uh, Gavin Hamilton, and, uh, also, uh, oh geez, a- Alex Livingston. He was the, uh, the, uh, last dean that I worked with there at the veterinary college.

Dick Julian (21:55):
Uh, we forgot, when we were talking about university life, um, what you did in your summers between years.

Ray Butler (22:02):
Oh yeah, right. Fair enough. Uh, yeah, well, the first year, I, uh, uh, worked for forestry at Tear Lake. It was, kind of, an interesting job for a, a kid. It, uh, uh, it was just in- involved with, uh, uh, checking the, the growth of, of Aspen, the trees. You had to go and mark out the area that you were going to. It, it would be involved in the experiment and, and thin them out. So, it was a great summer there.

Ray Butler (22:37):
Then the, uh, next year, by now, of course, I had a, a year at, at, uh, Guelph and I, during that time, I worked for Dr. Kingscote. Uh, he had a, uh, a colony of mosquitoes, uh, hades aegypti, yellow fever mosquitoes that he maintained there, so I, uh, worked, uh, 60 cents an hour, uh, maximum of two hours a day. And, but, uh, the offshoot of that, that he had a, a colleague, a Dr. West at, uh, Queen's University, um, who was, uh, doing some work with, uh, the defense research board. And so, that summer, I g- was employed by, uh, DRB up at, uh, Churchill, Manitoba as a base and then we'd go out from there, and it was c- collecting, uh, uh, blood samples from birds and mammals in the area.

Dick Julian (23:37):
It sounds like an interesting job.

Ray Butler (23:39):
It was. It was a great job.

Dick Julian (23:41):
And that was after second year?

Ray Butler (23:42):
That was after second year.

Dick Julian (23:43):

Ray Butler (23:44):
And then, third year, I thought I'm going to have to get more experience, so I came back and worked for, uh, Dr. Lewis-

Dick Julian (23:51):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (23:52):
The veterinarian that I started with when I was q- quite young. And then the following year, between fourth and fifth year, uh, I started with Dr. Lewis and then also, and we had a parting of the ways, and I, uh, went and worked with Dr. Walter Giesbrecht; he had the Sherbrook Animal Hospital.

Dick Julian (24:13):

Ray Butler (24:13):

Dick Julian (24:15):
I'm not sure that perhaps Dr. Barker didn't interview Dr. Giesbrecht. I know he did interview several people in Winnipeg.

Ray Butler (24:20):
He might have. He died, uh, quite young, uh, in a car accident-

Dick Julian (24:24):

Ray Butler (24:24):
In 1956, so I don't know whether, uh, Dr,-

Dick Julian (24:27):
I know that they interviewed the veterinarian that was running the diagnostic lab in, uh-

Ray Butler (24:32):
Dr. Isaac.

Dick Julian (24:32):
Yeah. Dr. Isaac [crosstalk].

Ray Butler (24:34):
Yeah. Yeah, and Dr. Savage, you know? Yeah.

Dick Julian (24:38):
Yeah. Uh, we didn't talk about your community involvement when you were in Dauphin. Yeah.

Ray Butler (24:43):
Yeah. We were quite involved being a small town. You pretty well, it's pretty hard not to be involved. And, uh, uh, some of the things I was involved with was a group called the, uh, Dauphin Association for Retarded Children. And, uh, we were involved with building a school.

Dick Julian (25:04):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (25:04):
Uh, the handicapped kids were, at that time, their, their school was the women's washroom (laughs) if you can believe it in the, uh, down in the basement, the fire hall, and so, uh, we, we eventually, yeah, built quite a nice building for them there. Yeah.

Dick Julian (25:22):
For students with special needs.

Ray Butler (25:24):
Yeah, exactly.

Dick Julian (25:25):
Uh-huh (affirmative).

Ray Butler (25:26):
Yeah, and they would come in from quite a distance. We had, uh, some would come from Grand View, 30 miles away.

Dick Julian (25:31):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (25:32):
Uh, every day, they'd drive in and go to school. Yeah.

Dick Julian (25:35):
And, uh, what professional associations were you involved with while you were in practice?

Ray Butler (25:40):
Uh, Manitoba was the [inaudible] and the CBMA, of course, but, uh, yeah, Manitoba, we, uh, was, was on the council and eventually president. Yeah.

Dick Julian (25:50):
So, what year would you have been president of the Manitoba Association?

Ray Butler (25:53):
Oh boy. I should know, I should, and I, I can't. It would about, um, '65-'66, in there.

Dick Julian (26:01):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (26:01):

Dick Julian (26:02):
They had an annual meeting like other professional services?

Ray Butler (26:04):
Uh, yes, well two, actually. They'd have one in Winnipeg and then one up at Clear Lake.

Dick Julian (26:08):
Uh-huh (affirmative).

Ray Butler (26:08):
Yeah, yeah.

Dick Julian (26:10):
And those would be scientific meetings?

Ray Butler (26:11):
Yes. Yeah, yeah, very much. Yeah.

Dick Julian (26:13):
When I was in practice in Canora, I used-

Ray Butler (26:15):

Dick Julian (26:15):
To come into Winnipeg because-

Ray Butler (26:16):
Oh yeah, sure.

Dick Julian (26:16):
There was no veterinary association nearby-

Ray Butler (26:19):
Yeah, yeah.

Dick Julian (26:19):
In Ontario.

Ray Butler (26:20):
That's right.

Dick Julian (26:20):
So, I did, that would be in the years-

Ray Butler (26:22):

Dick Julian (26:22):

Ray Butler (26:25):
Yeah. Well, then we probably-

Dick Julian (26:26):
That I was-

Ray Butler (26:26):
Attended meetings together then, I'm sure.

Dick Julian (26:27):
We might have.

Ray Butler (26:27):

Dick Julian (26:28):
We might have done.

Ray Butler (26:29):

Dick Julian (26:32):
So, uh, a little bit about family life.

Ray Butler (26:33):

Dick Julian (26:34):
You didn't tell me about your wife and, and-

Ray Butler (26:36):
Okay. I, I met Doreen in Winnipeg. Uh, she worked with the, um, uh, Dr. Giesbrecht.

Dick Julian (26:42):

Ray Butler (26:44):
And, uh, yeah, she, uh, she can't say enough about, uh, all the help she was in those early years, uh, especially before when we're, before Jim came. Yeah.

Dick Julian (26:57):
So, then she had some practice experience.

Ray Butler (26:59):
Oh, yes. Very much so.

Dick Julian (27:00):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (27:00):
Yeah. (laughs).

Dick Julian (27:02):
And so, when did you start a family?

Ray Butler (27:04):
Uh, uh, when Jeff arrived, we were married in, uh, December of '54 and Jeff arrived in, uh, 1960. Yeah.

Dick Julian (27:13):
So, you have one child?

Ray Butler (27:14):
Uh, oh no. Th- that was the, the start. Uh-

Dick Julian (27:15):
All right.

Ray Butler (27:16):
We have, we have four.

Dick Julian (27:17):

Ray Butler (27:17):
Yeah, and then n-, uh, Kevin, he's a handicapped, uh, boy. He's-

Dick Julian (27:21):

Ray Butler (27:23):
He's, uh, with us here.

Dick Julian (27:24):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (27:25):
Yeah, still with us. And then, uh, uh, next daughter going, uh, by age, was, uh, Karen, and she's now, she's still here in, in, uh, Saskatoon, and-

Dick Julian (27:37):
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Ray Butler (27:37):
She has four youngsters, so we see a lot of them. And then, our youngest, Joanne, is in, uh, Ottawa, w- with the, uh, uh, attorney, or the, uh, auditor general's office. Yeah.

Dick Julian (27:50):
And, uh, so you have grandchildren as well then?

Ray Butler (27:53):
Oh yes. We have seven grandchildren.

Ray Butler (27:55):

Dick Julian (27:55):
So, the ones in Ottawa wouldn't get here very often?

Ray Butler (27:58):
No, there's two of them. Uh, oh, in fact-

Dick Julian (27:59):

Ray Butler (27:59):
One, one of those has moved on to Halifax and, uh, yeah, the other one is, uh, at, at the University of Ottawa. Just started. Yeah.

Dick Julian (28:10):
Well, thank you. Is there anything else you'd like to, uh, to add-

Ray Butler (28:13):

Dick Julian (28:13):
To this interview?

Ray Butler (28:14):
Um, no, why don't we leave it at that and-

Dick Julian (28:17):
Well, then-

Ray Butler (28:18):

Dick Julian (28:18):
I'd like to thank you, uh, Dr. Butler. Uh, the interview is interesting. It provides information for, uh, our oral history project-

Ray Butler (28:26):

Dick Julian (28:26):
And so thank you.

Ray Butler (28:27):
You're welcome.

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