Cover photo for Paul J. Butzer's Obituary
Paul J. Butzer Profile Photo

Paul J. Butzer

October 8, 1928 — December 22, 2021

Paul J. Butzer

Paul J. Butzer, 93, of North Mankato, died Wednesday, December 22, 2021 surrounded by his family.

A celebratory wake will be held Thursday, December 30th, 1-4pm at Northview - North Mankato Mortuary, 2060 Commerce Drive, North Mankato, MN.

Paul Joseph Butzer was born October 8, 1928 in Mankato, the third of twelve children to Dr. John A. and Frances (Rock) Butzer, and grew up on Beech Street. He graduated from Loyola High School, and then went on to Mankato Teacher’s College, double majoring in chemistry and math.

In January 1950, he married Shirley K. Ream at St. John’s Catholic Church in Mankato. They moved to Verdi, MN, where he taught “everything, including band.” Until very recently, he was still in touch with his students from Verdi. The couple returned to Mankato a year later and began to raise a family. For many years the family lived on Page Avenue in lower North Mankato. and later built a new home on the hill. For 20 years, he owned and operated Paul’s Service Center on Front Street in Mankato, renaming it Tire Associates when he stopped selling gasoline. In 1975 he sold the business and began selling real estate with Layman-Todd Realty. When he got his broker’s license, he established Butzer Realty and eventually became a franchisee for Coldwell Banker. He was a successful and well-respected business owner in the area until his retirement. For years he had a radio show on KTOE with Don Rivet. “Butzer Today” was supposed to be about real estate, but it was more often about all the great things happening around town. Paul was an enthusiastic ambassador for the Mankato community.

He was a gear head. He loved anything with a motor and flew a Bonanza airplane all of his life, rode a BMW motorcycle, drove a Model T and owned several tragic motorhomes. He bought cars impulsively. Most recently, his favorites were his beloved “Jeepy” and the PT Cruiser.

Paul was a loving and devoted husband, father, grandpa and great-grandpa. He would often say, “Aren’t we having fun? All these great kids; doing so well.” His children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren were the joy of his life. He was proud of all of them.

Paul is survived by his children, Barbara Kurbanick (Cris), Salt Springs, FL, Bridget Brandt (David), Grinnell, IA, Damian, North Mankato, Heidi Butzer Ream, North Mankato, Todd (Jodi) Minong, WI and Abby Butzer Ireland (Frank), St. Clair, 23 grandchildren, and 25 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his wife, Shirley, in April, 2017; siblings Jack, Matt, Mary, Judy, Mark and Sue, and an infant daughter, Meaghan Jewel.

Our special thanks to Kacie Bohrer, Paul’s long time friend and caregiver, and the wonderful nurses at Allina Hospice. Memorials are preferred to MCCL, the Salvation Army or BENCHS Animal Shelter.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Paul J. Butzer, please visit our flower store.

Past Services


Thursday, December 30, 2021

1:00 - 4:00 pm (Central time)

Northview - North Mankato Mortuary

2060 Commerce Dr, North Mankato, MN 56003

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