From Mrs. Irish (Toni)

(I received this email from Mrs. Irish (Toni Butner) on Feb. 24, 1998 and would like to share it with you all.)

Dear Mr. Shotgun,

       You don't know how many times I have heard my husband say that name, shotgun, I mean. I wondered what he had gotten himself involved with. What with names like, shotgun, Buford, Buckshot, so191, Sabre, ks, Reno, TJ, and fifer and the list goes on and on. I found, that these were his friends. He had never seen any of you, but you made his last year of life so precious. He once said that he enjoyed the talks he had with you and the other members of the chat room better than his meeting with the "suits" as he called them, because there was a true love of history without egos getting in the way. I read with pride and many tears the special thoughts that the members of your room had to say about my dear Ernie. You all seem to know him so well. It was a special quality that drew me to him many years ago. He treated people as he would want to be treated, he believed whole heartily in the Golden Rule. My son in law and my daughter will be making a trip to Gettysburg this summer. They wanted to accompany Ernie this summer to the Longstreet Memorial Dedication. Ernie thought very highly of the General. He use to say he thought he got a bad rap. I don for the life of me know what that means. I just know he respected the man.
       Ernie spent a lot of time rummaging through his very extensive library. Now the books are silent and the computer is turned off most of the time. Thank you and your friends for being his friend. You truly were.

Toni Butner