Don Burkett, age 84, faithful follower of Jesus Christ, loving husband and father, and friend to so many, went home to be with his Lord on April 20, 2019. At the time of his death, he was a resident of Clarview Nursing Home in Sligo, PA. His family is so thankful for the wonderful, kind and compassionate care that he received there. Don was born in Timblin, PA, on August 16, 1934 to Walter and Ruth (Thompson) Burkett. He graduated from Punxsutawney High School in 1952 and some of the most treasured memories of his life were associated with the 35th anniversary cruise sponsored by his classmate, Delbert Dunmire. Don served his country in the United States Air Force and enjoyed sharing the experiences of his time in Germany along with his knowledge of the dialect he learned while he was there. Later, he so enjoyed his time as a member of the American Legion in New Bethlehem. After his time in the service, he attended Clarion University of Pennsylvania, receiving his Bachelor’s Degree in Mathematics Education. A brilliant mathematician, he later attained his Master’s Degree in Mathematics through Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana. He married his beloved wife, D. Jean Kiehl on November 26, 1960 in Frostburg, PA. Jean preceded him in death on June 3, 1999. Don taught Math at Redbank Valley High School for over 30 years, retiring in 1993. He was a much-beloved, passionate and caring teacher who would remember and greet former students by name even if he hadn’t seen them in 30 years! Baseball was a great passion of his life. He played baseball for Timblin in his youth and then coached baseball at Redbank Valley as well as Little League, Teener League, and American Legion. He loved to tell about his undefeated 1966 Redbank Valley team. He was also a brilliant punster who loved plays on words and the groans of his audience. He was known for his sunny, kind, and upbeat disposition. He was always quick with a joke or funny story. He especially enjoyed spending time with his friends at the Heritage House in Brookville, teaching Tai Chi while regaling his audience with many jokes and songs. He loved playing bridge there as well. He served as a board member of the local Area Agency on Aging. He was a fiercely loyal and faithful father who loved and cared for his family. But the story of Don Burkett’s life would be incomplete if it was not told what made him such a remarkable, kind, and giving man. Don loved his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who completely transformed his life. Don sung His praises regularly and served Him in many capacities. He was a Sunday School teacher for many years and served on various church boards and committees. He also loved to accompany a group from the Roseville Church of Christ that would visit nursing homes and sing hymns with them. Don loved people and sought to show them Christ’s love in all that he did. In addition to his beloved wife, Don was preceded in death by his parents and his brother, Harold Burkett. Don is survived by his sister, Elizabeth Emery of Emerickville and sister-in-law Gertrude “Joyce” Burkett of Brookville. He is survived by his special friend, Shirley Emery of Brookville. He is also survived by his sons, Jeffrey Burkett (wife, Carrie), of Sigel, and William Burkett of Brookville as well as granddaughter Cassandra Burkett, and grandsons Nathan Burkett and Caleb Burkett, all of Sigel. Friends and family will be received at McKinney-d’Argy Funeral Home at 345 Main Street, Brookville, PA on Thursday, April 25th, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. and on Friday, April 26th, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. The funeral service will immediately follow at 1 p.m. and will be co-officiated by Pastor Jimmy Swogger and Don’s son, Jeff. Interment will take place at Lakelawn Memorial Park, Reynoldsville, PA. Memorial donations may be made to a charity for which Don had great affection, Jews for Jesus, at 60 Haight Street, San Francisco, CA 94102. Online condolences and other information may be found by visiting www.mckinneydargy.com
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