Roy Howard "Butch" Billman, 69, of Bay View, died suddenly on December 13, 2021, at Firelands Regional Medical Center, and left this earth to be with his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. He was a beloved husband, father, Opa (grandfather), and history teacher at Firelands Christian Academy. Children knew that under his gruff exterior Roy was a big teddy bear.
Roy was born July 5, 1952, in Sandusky to Howard and Jean Billman, where he attended Holy Angels Catholic School, and graduated from Sandusky High School. He went on to attend St. Meinrad Seminary and School of Theology in Indiana for 2 years before leaving to serve the Lord in other ways, earning a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of Toledo. He managed group homes in the Cleveland area for many years before his interests led him to the Christian TV station WGGN in Castalia, where the Lord opened the door for his employment there, and he worked for over 20 years. He enjoyed driving a bus route with his best friend and co-worker, Brian Adkinson, for 30 years, and taught Sunday school, leading many children to the Lord, as well as adults on Saturday visitation, accompanied by Brian.
Roy was lovingly known as "Butch" after his grandfather said he resembled the cartoon character "Butchie Boy" from Bozo the Clown. He loved playing baseball and backyard football, and was an avid Cleveland Indians, Browns, and Cavaliers fan. When he was young, his grandfather took him to a championship Browns game that they won! Roy loved fishing, and once had to use his "Boog" Powell baseball bat to stop a monster catfish from getting away from his wagon! He was a science fiction fanatic, and enjoyed all the Star Trek shows, Star Wars movies, and Marvel movies. His favorite restaurant was Big Boy for their burgers, along with Longhorn for their French onion soup. He loved to eat Jif peanut butter out of his own jar and had a taste for German food from his heritage. Roy was a Civil War buff and enjoyed learning history and astronomy. He also loved music, his favorite band being “Chicago”. He started the Erie County Special Olympics chapter and coached the women's basketball team to a regional victory with a ringer who was 7' tall. He was most rewarded by being Opa to his grandson, Owen Newkirk, a carbon copy of himself.
He is survived by his beloved wife, Karen (Couch) Billman, his daughter, Kendall Billman, a stepdaughter, Jillian (Blair) Martin, brother Paul, son-in-law Caine Newkirk, grandson Owen Newkirk, half-sister Tammy Billman, dear nieces and nephews, his special friend Mickey Henry, and other friends.
Roy was preceded in death by his father, Howard, his mother, Jean Thompson, his beloved daughter, Laura Ashleigh Newkirk, half-brothers, Tom and Robert, and half-sister, Barbara Dwight.
A special thank you to the nurses who attended him at the Seidman Cancer Center with expert care. In lieu of flowers, donations may be given to the family, Columbus Avenue United Methodist Church, 2401 Columbus Ave., Sandusky, Ohio 44870, or Firelands Christian Academy, 3809 Maple Ave., Castalia, OH 44824.
Visitation will be Wednesday, December 22 from 3-6 p.m. at Pfeil Funeral Home, 617 Columbus Ave., Sandusky. Masks are required. Family and friends may call from 10 a.m. until the funeral service at 11 a.m. Thursday, December 23, 2021, at Columbus Ave. United Methodist Church. Masks are required. Per Roy's request, cremation took place after a donation of his corneas.
Condolences may be shared at pfeilfuneralhome.com.
My beloved husband, I love you to the stars and back and will join you when I fly away to Sweet Beulah Land!
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Columbus Avenue United Methodist Church
2401 Columbus Avenue, Sandusky OH 44870
Firelands Christian Academy
3809 Maple Avenue, Castalia OH 44824