Donald Burns

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Donald Paul Burns, age 86, of Katy, Texas, passed away on Friday, June 28, 2013 following a multi-year battle with Alzheimer's disease and cancer. He was born on December 10, 1926 in Elizabeth, New Jersey, to Peter and Kathleen Connolly Burns. Due to the early death of his mother, Don was raised by his three loving aunts, Loretta, Cecilia and Maurice Burns. Don was a 1944 graduate of Thomas Jefferson High School in Elizabeth, New Jersey and soon after entered the Army Air Force where it was his ambition to become a pilot. Within nine months of his entry into the service, World War II ended so Don returned home and began his career with ESSO Standard Oil Company in New York City. Don simultaneously entered New York University where, after 7 years of night school, he received his Bachelor of Science degree in 1953 from the School of Commerce, Accounts and Finance.
Beginning as a clerk in the mail room, Don spent his entire 42-year career with Exxon, Inc., in locations that included Manhattan, New York, New Orleans, Louisiana, and Houston Texas. He retired in 1986 as a Senior Systems Analyst where he was distinguished for successfully designing computer programs for marketing and sales systems that were implemented across the Eastern seaboard for years beyond his retirement.
Without a doubt, Don considered the most significant and proudest accomplishment of his life to be his family. Don is survived by the love of his life, Catherine Brown Burns, his wife of 59 years, his six children: Anne (and her husband, Robert) Northam of Friendswood, Texas; Mary Ellen Burns (and her husband, Rev. Dr. Peter W. Barlow) of Universal City, Texas; Patricia (and her husband, Howard, Esq.) King of Kingwood, Texas; Kathleen Boni Reynolds of Katy, Texas; Caroline (and her husband, David) Salak of Katy, Texas; and Thomas Burns of Dallas, Texas; his 14 grandchildren: Sarah (John) Cypert, Jennifer (Zachary) Sanches, Theresa Northam, Ryan (Erin) King, Melanie (Joshua) Mills, Stephanie (Kevin) Ward, Jordan Boni, Rebecca Northam, Tyler King, Allison Boni, Hannah Barlow, John Salak, Elizabeth Salak, and Kelly Salak; and his three great-grandchildren, Braeden Sanches, Jacob Cypert and Gage Sanches; and many other loving friends and relatives. An active and devoted Catholic, Don was a member of the Knights of Columbus, served in many lay capacities and, upon retirement, volunteered his business talents to his parish church for over five years. He also served as secretary for the Exxon Annuitants Club for many years.
Memorial services will be held at the Epiphany of the Lord Catholic Community in Katy, Texas on Saturday, June 20, 2013 at 1:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial gifts be made to the .

Published in Houston Chronicle on July 14, 2013
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