Dr. John Richard Button was born in London, Ontario on September 19th, 1951. He was the eldest of 5 children born to Dr. James Robert Button and the former Nancy Jane Milne. His father was a dedicated family physician in Ridgetown and his siblings were; Jim, Tom, Doug and Jane. Dr. Button attended Ridgetown Public School and Ridgetown High School.
Dr. Button graduated from The University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine in 1977. He interned at Victoria Hospital from 1977 to 1978. In June of 1978 he joined his father in his medical practice located at 66 Main St., in Ridgetown. In 1982, the office moved to 68 Main Street. Dr. Button and his father enjoyed many years working together, side by side in their medical practice.
Dr. Button was Chief of Family Practice for St. Joseph’s Hospital in Chatham and he was President of the Kent County Medical Society. He served a term as the Chairman of the Board of the Chatham-Kent Health Alliance Foundation. Dr. Button was designated as a Coroner in 1994.
Like his father, Dr. Button had been quite active within the community of Chatham-Kent. He served as the President of the Kiwanis Club of Ridgetown, Lt. Governor of Division 4 of Eastern Canada and Caribbean District (EC&C) of Kiwanis International, Governor of EC&C, and a member of the Kiwanis International Board of Trustees. In 2012, Dr. Button was elected as the vice-president of Kiwanis International. He served as the President of Kiwanis International from October 1st, 2014 until September 30th, 2015, while the organization’s celebrated it’s centennial year.
Dr. Button was recognized for his community involvement and his dedication to medicine, by receiving many awards including the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal, Chatham-Kent Citizen of the Year (2010), Tri-Hospital Board Award for Medical Excellence, Rotary International Award for Professional Excellence, Diamond Level 3 Mel Osborne Fellow from the Kiwanis Foundation of Canada, Diamond Level George Hixson Fellow from Kiwanis International Foundation, Diamond Level 2 Walter Zeller Fellow from Kiwanis International Foundation, Godfrey Dyer Fellow from Kiwanis Foundation of Jamaica, Member of Founder’s Circle from Kiwanis Foundation of Capital District and Tablet of Honour Recipient from Kiwanis International. Dr. Button was very proud to have been inducted into the Ridgetown High School Hall of Excellence.
Dr. Button had two children, Tim and Claire and 5 precious grandchildren; Brynn, Blythe, Tristan, Anna Greta and Liv.
Dr. Button retired on the 31st of December, 2011 and he enjoyed music, reading, fishing and his involvement with Kiwanis.
Dr. Button died at University Hospital in London on the 15th of June, 2020. At the time of his death, Dr. Button was married to Deborah Ann (Driver) Button.
*His father Dr. James Button also appears on the Chatham-Kent Physician Tribute website.