Cover photo for LoIda Harriet Burke's Obituary
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LoIda Harriet Burke

November 2, 1917 — February 15, 2024


LoIda Harriet Burke

LoIda Harriet Palmer Burke went to be with the Lord on February 15, 2024 surrounded by the love of her family in Diana, Texas.

She was born at home in Poughkeepsie, New York on November 2, 1917 to Horace Palmer, Jr and Harriet Louise Pearce Palmer. After graduating from high school, she left to attended the Genesee Hospital Nursing School on the day her mother died. Three years later in 1939 she matriculated with her RN degree. Then she married the love of her life, William John Burke. They had their first child, Wilma Jocelynn, two years later, followed in another 2 years by their son, William John, and after another 6 years their third child, Wendy Jaye. After WW2 they resided in Poughkeepsie, then Lake Katrine, NY, moved with her husband’s job with IBM to the Washington, DC area and then retired to Clearwater, FL before coming to live near their daughter in Longview, TX. Most of her life she was a devoted stay at home mother, only working as a nurse briefly in the DC area.

LoIda and Billy, her beloved, wonderful husband, loved to travel and circled the globe twice. They made many friends on these trips and she corresponded with them extensively for years. Their favorite type of trip was a cruise especially on Holland America. They were married 72 years and totally devoted to each other throughout their marriage. After he died, she lived with her daughter and son-in-law, Wendy and Keith, to the end.

She gardened, sewed, knitted beautiful sweaters, and made knitted scarves for the seamen through the Seamen’s Church Institute well into her 90’s. She loved church and talked to the Lord nightly. She prayed for those who had no one to pray for them, hoping they would be happy and even hoping the Lord was happy too. She was a member of New Beginnings Baptist Church in Gilmer, TX, sitting on the second row at the 8am service until the last few months of her life.

LoIda was proud of her pioneer heritage which she evidenced throughout her life, even to the end. She was especially fond of relating stories about her ancestors- the Palmers, Freers and the Hudson Valley Iroquois. She is preceded in death by her husband, William John Burke, and grandson, Douglas Burton Neyer. She is survived by Wilma Jocelynn Burke and her husband Andrew Suto, William John Burke, and Wendy Jaye Burke and her husband Keith Michael Stack, her grandsons Julian Patrick Douthitt and David Burton Neyer, her great grandsons William Dow Douthitt, Wyatt Dalton Douthitt and Devin Burton Neyer. She called Dow and Wyatt the delight of her old age.

She loved the Lord, her family and her friends dearly. She truly had a servant’s heart and was always more concerned about the welfare of others than her own. She would offer her meal to anyone near her if she was served first. She asked us every night what she could do for us and reminded us to call if we needed her even when she forgot she was too weak to get out of bed. She was always thankful for everything she was given.  She taught us all how to grow old graciously and gratefully. She will be missed but we will see her again in Heaven.

We thank the women who have helped us take care of her all these years: Kellie, Vonnita, Jasmine, Marilu, Tina, and especially Elie. Also, we thank Accent Care Hospice, Elizabeth and especially Verlisha who was a Godsend and helped us here at the end. All of them treated Mother with loving tenderness and were a blessing to us and to her.

In lieu of flowers we would like to encourage everyone to buy flowers for their mother or mother figure in honor and memory of LoIda who was a great one.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of LoIda Harriet Burke, please visit our flower store.


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