RNT Calls announced on Monday that the company’s founder, Harry Milton “Butch” Richenback, passed away on June 29 after a long battle with cancer. Butch, a champion duck caller who sold his first call in 1976, will be remembered as a mentor, sportsman, and legendary figure in the world of duck calls.
“Today we lost one of the best call makers and calling instructors there has ever been. He was a true craftsman and call building pioneer,” stated RNT Calls on its Facebook page. “His ability to strip down call instructions to its simplest form has been rivaled by none. Teaching more world champions than any man or woman alive. His belief in producing one call that could do it all, was his belief, passion and the foundations of what RNT has been built on. His passion for calling and call building, will be sorely missed.”
Butch got his start under the tutelage of another legend, Chick Majors of Dixie Mallard duck calls. Discovering his love for duck calling at an early age, Butch won the coveted Champion of Champions title and eventually retired from competition to focus on growing his own duck call company, an idea that eventually became Rich-N-Tone. Since then this master duck caller has trained numerous other competitors, many of whom went on to become champions in their own right.
While he remained a large influence in the design of RNT’s calls, Butch’s health eventually deteriorated. According to his fan page on Facebook, Butch underwent a number of taxing surgeries this year and was admitted back to the hospital in June due to problems breathing.
“We cannot begin to express our appreciation & thankfulness to each & everyone of you for all of your kind thoughts, prayers, & words of encouragement for Butch & his family. Sadly, He lost his battle today,” his fan page stated on Monday.
Visitation will be held at the Turpin Funeral Home in Stuttgart on Wednesday. Funeral services will be held on Thursday. Butch will eventually be laid to rest at Lone Tree Cemetary in Stuttgart, Arkansas, the city he helped put on the map.
Image from Facebook