John Dabney Butler was a member of the Reserve Officer Training Corps at Brackenridge High School in his hometown, San Antonio, Texas.
He left school in 1938, enlisted in the Navy on July 12, 1938, and by October was aboard the U.S.S. Arizona. He was a fireman first class when he was killed in the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941.
Mr. Butler was born April 24, 1920 to James Roscoe Butler and Evelyn E. Brandburg Butler. He delivered newspapers for the local Express newspaper and attended a Baptist church. His father was a truck driver for the federal government and his mother a homemaker. The family included three other children.
A plaque was dedicated in December 1943 at the Municipal Auditorium in San Antonio in memory of Mr. Butler and five other local men killed at the Pearl Harbor attack.