Rolland William “Butch” Shubkagel

Rolland William “Butch” Shubkagel passed away on the morning of Dec. 19. He was born on May 28, 1940 in Breckenridge to George Calvin and Marjorie Eileen Shubkagel. He was their first and only son. Immediately thereafter, they took him to 11,360 feet to live in the mining town of Climax.

Butch claimed that he lived on warm beer for the first three days of his life, his family said. He lived in Climax until he was a junior in high school and then moved to Leadville. Butch spent the rest of his youth in Leadville, where played drums in a band with his mother, set bowling pins and raised pet chipmunks that he kept in his pockets. He made many lifelong friends along the way, his family said. 

Butch then met the love of his life, Lois Winifred Nelson. He graduated from Lake County High School in 1958. After graduation, he worked for Beales Gas Company for a year. In 1959, he took employment with the Amex Corporation at the Climax Mine. He trained to be an electrician and worked at the mine for the next 28 years. Butch and Lois were married in Leadville on June 17, 1961. Soon thereafter they moved to Buena Vista. Butch and many others from Buena Vista made the 39-mile commute to the mine for work. 

In August 1965 the couple had their first child, Adriene Rae. Two years later, in September 1967, Martha Ann “Marti” was born. Erin Sue “Suzy” was then born in June 1970. 

After the Climax Mine closed in 1987, Butch continued to live in Buena Vista and work at other mines in Colorado. In 1988, he and Lois moved to Winnemucca, Nevada. He continued to work for the Amex Corporation at the Sleeper Gold Mine. They spent approximately four years in Nevada, then moved to Golden, and eventually retired in Frankfort, Kansas, where Butch lived until his passing.

Butch was a voracious reader, crossword puzzle player and consumer of knowledge, his family said. People did not know him as Rolland, but they certainly knew Butch, they added. “To know Butch was to know humor, love and kindness,” his family said. “He always had a joke or a story. He was a husband, a son, a brother, a father, an uncle and a friend. He will be greatly missed.”

Butch was preceded in death by his wife Lois and daughter Adriene. He is survived by daughters Marti (Tim) Shea and Suzy; sisters Diana Braunschweig and Sharon (John) Rodman; nephews Matthew and Eric Braunschweig; nieces Lynne (Craig) Matthews and April Garrett; numerous great-nieces and nephews; “adopted” daughter Dawn Palo and dear friends Carole and Kenny Tritz, known to Butch as “Old Tritzy.” 

A celebration of life will be held at a later date.

A memorial fund has been established for the Frankfort Community Care Home. Contributions may be sent in care of Padden Funeral Chapel, 101 E. Third St., Frankfort, KS 66427.