Eleanor Burke obituary photo
 
In Memory of

Eleanor Burke

August 11, 1922 - March 14, 2015

Obituary


Eleanor Pearl Watson Burke , 92, peacefully joined her beloved husband, Jim, and their cherished elder son, Jimmy, in the arms of the Lord on Saturday, March 14, 2015. Eleanor was born Aug. 11, 1922, in New York.

Funeral: A Liturgy of the Word will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday, April 25, St. Michael Catholic Church, Bedford. Eleanor and Jim will be interred with their beloved Jimmy in Long Island National Veterans Cemetery on Monday, May 18.

Eleanor was the fourth of five fun-loving and close Watson children, two sisters and two...

Eleanor Pearl Watson Burke , 92, peacefully joined her beloved husband, Jim, and their cherished elder son, Jimmy, in the arms of the Lord on Saturday, March 14, 2015. Eleanor was born Aug. 11, 1922, in New York.

Funeral: A Liturgy of the Word will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday, April 25, St. Michael Catholic Church, Bedford. Eleanor and Jim will be interred with their beloved Jimmy in Long Island National Veterans Cemetery on Monday, May 18.

Eleanor was the fourth of five fun-loving and close Watson children, two sisters and two brothers. Mother would regale us with stories of their childhood and their motor trips to visit Watson relatives in Canada. Eleanor was the last surviving child of Elizabeth and Harry Watson. As one niece said, "Aunt Eleanor's passing marks the end of an era."

When Eleanor was 17 she met her one true love, Jim. Their deep love and devotion to each other was evident to everyone who met them. They were very happily married for over 63 years.

An avid equestrian in her youth, Eleanor transferred her passion for horses to her passion for her husband and her family. The war and Jim's service in the Navy kept them physically apart; however, the exquisite letters they exchanged deepened their love. After a four-year courtship Eleanor and Jim were married on Feb. 12, 1944. Dad told us when he saw his beautiful bride walking down the aisle he was the happiest man in the world. Their love and joy deepened with the birth of their first son, Jimmy. Three and a half years later their little family extended to include a daughter, Sharon. Ten years later they were blessed with a second son, Timothy. Eleanor devoted herself to her husband and their family caring for and involving us in many activities. Anyone who knew Eleanor knew she was always in motion and indefatigable. Not only was she dedicated to her family but also to her's and Jim's many lifelong friends. Eleanor was always available to help and loved to entertain. One of her great joys was to be a source of amusement and fun. Eleanor had been a member of the Ladies Guild of Annunciation Parish, the Gold Star Mothers and several ladies clubs.

When they became empty-nesters, Eleanor and Jim retired to Ormond Beach, Fla., where they continued their life journey together, for they truly were one, making new friends and dancing. Mother and Dad loved to dance and the many Navy and American Legion affairs they attended provided them with the perfect occasions. Mother did volunteer work as a Pink Lady and assisted Dad in his Navy and American Legion activities. They enjoyed traveling and sailed on many cruises dancing all the while.

After 23 wonderful years in the Sunshine State, Eleanor and Jim wished to be closer to their children and granddaughter, Jaimie, and became Texans. As always Eleanor and Jim developed new friends and when Mother lost her beloved Jim her friends lovingly stepped in and they developed a lovely group we dubbed "The Domino Ladies." They were all very supportive of each other and Mother spent many happy times with these and other dear friends.

With the exception of the devastating loss of Jimmy, a Navy aviator killed in action in Vietnam in 1967, Mother and Dad were delighted with their life and the passing of time only deepened their love. Now they are all together again and their beautiful love story begins a lovely new chapter. One which shall last for eternity.

Eleanor's family would especially like to thank the extraordinary doctors, nurses, aides, therapists, friends and caregivers who greatly enhanced the quality of Mother's life during the last several years.

Survivors: Daughter, Sharon and her husband, Jerry Duckor, of Mill Valley, Calif.; son, Timothy C. Burke and his wife, Vicky, of Bedford; granddaughter, Jaimie and her husband, Clarence "Woody" Wood, of Lakeside, Calif. She is also survived by her brother-in-law, Joseph Vernum and his wife, Ginny; daughter-in-law, Judith Schkade; cousins, Maureen Faulkner, Pat Fowler, Cele Kane, Kathleen Wright, Janet and Michael Gabelmann, and Barbara Parker; many lovely nieces and nephews;and her dear friends of over 80 years, Corrine Birdie and Janie Brown.