Real Butte tough
Throughout his life he worked hard and played harder.
On his 50th birthday Hoot's life changed forever. He went to work on his birthday (which he said he'd never worked before) and fell over 60 feet. This fall would have killed most men. But Hoot isn't most men! The injury left him unable to work. This was hard for Hoot. Working is most all he knew.
Times were tough but Hoot once again persevered. It was at this time something began to change in Hoot. Focus on the positive parts of his life and community began to take hold. Hoot, like most Butte parents, had invested heavily in his kids. He with the help of many others built the Butte Wrestling Club. Self admitted, Hoot knew nothing about wrestling but loved the physical nature of the sport, and the benefits of individual sports.
Through trial and error he along with Skeez Sullivan and countless volunteers developed the Butte Wrestling Club. Which became a instrumental part of the soon to come historically successful Butte High wrestling program. The program would tally 13 straight state championships, a record that will probably stand forever.
But that's not what makes Hoot so special. He truly cares.. Not just about people but about Butte. He is the first to forgive and give people another chance. After all he can attest. It's not how you start but how you finish. Hoot is the ultimate fundraiser. No one can circle the troops like Hoot. I swear he knows everyone. He takes time to greet and visit with anyone who passes him.
For as long as I know I have always been told how tough Hoot was. I have to say that's not what I see. I see a kind compassionate man that cares deeply about people. I see soft blue eyes that have seen lots of pain but yet smile as if nothing ever affected him. Butte tough isn't how many men you beat up. How strong you are or how much pain you can withstand. Butte tough is more about your ability to deal with adversity and maintain and better the person you are. That's truly the definition of Butte tough!!
Shavon Baltezar, Butte