- March 14, 2012
Mrs. Carolyn Kent Butt Grist, 87, a native of Winter Park, Fla., passed away on Friday morning, April 15, 2011, at Presbyterian Hospital in Charlotte, N.C. In 2006 Carolyn moved to Aldersgate Retirement Community in Charlotte. She was a loving wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother and a friend to all who knew her. Her smile was infectious and her heart knew no bounds. She loved lively conversations with family and friends, as well as quiet evenings with a good book. She was clear of mind and body, enjoying music, bridge, art and travel, especially to her beloved New Smyrna Beach and North Carolina mountain home, “The Treehouse.”
Upon her passing, she still owned the downtown Winter Park building on Park Avenue in which she grew up. In the early 1920s, her family lived upstairs and her father operated his store on the first floor. She recalled looking out her bedroom window as a child and seeing cars parked in Central Park and men playing cards under the trees. Her mother worked for several decades down the street in the Rollins College library.
Carolyn graduated from Winter Park High School, Rollins College and Emory University. She met her first husband, Dr. Cecil Gascoyne Butt III, in the band at Rollins College. Dr. Butt eventually became the head of pathology at Orange Memorial Hospital — now Orlando Regional Healthcare System — where he and a partner were the first to discover the amoeba that infects some swimmers in lakes with high bacteria counts. Carolyn completed her nursing degree at Emory University and worked in that field prior to her retirement.
Carolyn was preceded in death by her parents, Claire Walker Kent and Beecher Allerton Kent, two husbands, Dr. Cecil G. Butt and John March Grist, as well as two children, Alden David Butt and Michael George Butt, all of Orlando, Fla. She is survived by two children, Allen Cecil Butt and Martha Carolyn Butt Horowitz, and two stepchildren, Charles Mayson Grist and Jeannie Grist Floyd, 15 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.
Carolyn was a member of the Junior League of Greater Orlando, Country Club of Orlando, the Rosalind Club, the Winter Park University Club and the Winter Park Historical Society. She also served on the board of Eagles Nest Camp in Brevard, N.C., for many years.
A memorial service was held in Charlotte immediately following her passing. Carolyn’s family is traveling from around the country to hold a special memorial service in her hometown of Winter Park for her Central Florida family and friends. The service will be held at Knowles Chapel, Rollins College, on Friday, April 13, at 11 a.m. followed by a reception at Harry P. Leu Gardens in the Camellia Room. All who knew and loved her are invited. Carolyn will be dearly missed by her family and friends and will be forever in their hearts and memories. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the American Cancer Society, 1601 W. Colonial Dr., Orlando, FL 32804.