Butler James Felts, Jr., age 84, of Lamar, passed away Thursday, August 28, 2008, at Freeman West Hospital in Joplin.


     Butler was born August 17, 1924, at Wickes, Arkansas, to Butler and Florence (Smith) Felts. He developed a passion for the movie industry at an early age, and it was always a big part of his life. At the age of 17, Butler joined the U.S. Marine Corp, operating the movie theaters on military bases at Camp Pendleton, in Guam and Chichijima during World War II.  On April 22, 1950, at Joplin, he married Wanda Fowler, and they made their home in Lamar. Butler built the Barco Drive-In and operated it as well as the Lamar Plaza Theater. He also owned and operated the Trail Drive-In and Fox Theater in Nevada for 10 years.  Under their ownership, the Barco was a source of community pride and they operated it 58 years, retiring in 2008. Butler had served as president of Lamar Chamber of Commerce and was a member of Grace Lutheran Church, the American Legion. 


     Survivors include his wife of 58 years, Wanda, of the home; two sons and a daughter-in-law, Jim & Brenda Felts, Lamar and Gary Felts, Fort Walton Beach, Florida; two sisters, Joann Baden, Westminster, California and Peggy Smith, Pittsburg; three grandchildren, Stephanie & husband Mike Martin, Adam Felts and Aaron Felts; two step-grandchildren, Steven & Travis Schiernbeck;: and two great-grandsons, Blake and Brandon.


     Funeral services will be held at 2:00 p.m. Sunday, August 31st at Daniel Funeral Home where the family will receive friends from 1:00 p.m. until service time.   Burial will be in Lake Cemetery with full military honors.


     Memorial contributions are suggested to Grace Lutheran Church in care of Daniel Funeral Home.


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