James Butterfield

Obituary of James E Butterfield


James Eugene Butterfield, 83 years old of Raritan, NJ died peacefully at home, with his family in attendance, on January 23, 2019.


Born to James A. and Evelyn R. (Bridge) in Providence, RI on Aug 5, 1935. Jim  grew up in Providence and later the family moved to Warwick. A passionate outdoorsman, he spent most of his free time hunting and fishing. 


He worked with the RI Dept of Entomology for a number of years and in March 1966 he accepted a position with the US Department of Agriculture and moved to Somerville, NJ with his new wife Martha (Harker). 


In his position as a Research Technician he found a passion for science and research that would carry him through a career spanning over 30 years with the USDA.  He co-authored papers on the study of disease in agricultural produce that can be found in the Library of Congress and designed the first computer program used to identify fungal and bacterial infections in fruits and vegetables.


In his spare time he had a passion for gardening.  For more than 50 years he would dig, plant and enjoy the harvest.  An avid reader, he devoured books on U.S. and world history, science, and politics. 


Through all this Jim and Martha proudly raised three boys, James Daniel, Jeremy Thomas and Joshua Matthew, who learned from their father to find passion in a career, to find joy in nature, and from your first breath to your last enjoy life, never stop learning, growing, and to always be curious.  Jim is survived by his loving wife Martha, his brother Daniel of Chepachet, RI three sons and 6 grand children.


Donations in memory of James Butterfield can be made to:

Columbia University Medical Center

Pulmonary Hypertension Center


Pulmonary Hypertension Comprehensive Care Center

Division of Pediatric Cardiology

3959 Broadway CH-2N

New York, NY 10032




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