Bernice Martha Burns

Oct 4, 1919 – Dec 24, 2017

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Obituary

Bernice Martha Burns, age 98 passed away on December 24th, 2017 Bernice was born October 4, 1919 to John Louis Schmid and his second wife Mary Linstaedt near Hebron, North Dakota. Bernice was the 6th of eight children and the second child born to Mary. She grew up on a farm near Beulah, North Dakota. She preferred to be out doors and was involved in many farm chores.

During some of her high school years, Bernice worked for room and board and lived in town. She played on her high school basketball team as well. For a short time after high school she taught in the small school in her town. She traveled west in 1941 to San Diego, CA where she worked as a waitress and then to Tacoma where she worked as an office clerk at the Seattle-Tacoma shipyards and Fort Lewis. She met her husband Harold Burns at First Christian Church in Tacoma having first become friends with his mother Florence. Harold had served in the Army Air Corps during WWII and recently returned. They were married in 1949. She joined Harold in Pullman while he finished college at WSU then to Seattle where they made their home. Their 3 children Keith Dena and Carol were born there.

They were active members of Findlay Street Christian Church. Bernice enjoyed children and taught Sunday school for many years even after her own children were grown. She was active in the women’s fellowship and also served as an elder. She continued her membership for over 60 years.

In 1962 they moved to New Orleans for four years while Harold worked on the first stage of the Saturn V rocket. Then back to Seattle until they moved to Mukilteo in 1974 to be close to the Everett Boeing plant where Harold worked on the 747. In 2001, several years after Harold passed away, Bernice moved to the Kirkland area to be close her daughter Dena.

Bernice was a lifelong learner: she read about and studied many things, history, politics, and theology. She always had a garden and grew flowers, fruits, and vegetables. Bernice became acquainted with all the local birds wherever she lived. She enjoyed traveling with her husband and family as long as she got to visit family and friends along the way. She also enjoyed spending as much time as possible with her grandchildren.

Bernice is preceded in death by her parents, her7 siblings Helen, Elsie, John, Lloyd, Irene, Irvin and Verna Deane; by her husband Harold and her son Keith. Bernice is survived by her daughters Dena (Jim) Hunt, and Carol (Nick) Pinnell; daughter in law Sylvia Abuthan; granddaughters Christina (Paul) DuJardin, Helen Hunt, Brittany (Cole) Collier, Alyssa Pinnell, Darlene Pinnell and great grandson Nicolai Collier.

 

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