BURKHART, GAYLON MONROE - age 67, of Corryton, Tennessee, will be deeply missed as he concluded his courageous fight with cancer on Wednesday, August 20, 2014. Born and raised in the Asbury community, Gaylon cherished the family farm which was also home to his grandparents, J.A.H. and Susie Burkhart, and parents, J.C. and Ruth Pratt Burkhart. No matter where he lived, Asbury was always his 'heart home'. It was there he became a hobby farmer where he took great pleasure sharing his garden produce, assisting neighbors with their farming needs, and enjoying decades of joyful gatherings and celebrations. He equally enjoyed time spent at his Uncle Walter Burkhart's farm in Rutledge. Gaylon became a member of Magnolia Avenue United Methodist Church in his youth and for many years enjoyed many facets of the church, especially being in the church choir. He enjoyed singing in four part harmony ensembles and anything related to the guitar. He was an avid UT football and basketball fan which began even before his days as a student and was a member of the Tennessee Fund, enjoyed playing golf, and studying military history. He was a tireless ambassador for those who serve our country and his 23 year career with the Tennessee Air National Guard leading to MSgt stemmed from his father's valiant service in the Philippines during World War II. In retirement Gaylon had a retirement dream job at the Titanic Museum in Pigeon Forge where he delighted imparting historical information and ensuring the ultimate experience for all visitors and guests. When he was unable to continue his responsibilities the Titanic staff and leadership noted his absence through their weekly letters and calls which sustained him and brought much joy. Wherever Gaylon became involved he would develop lasting, meaningful relationships and his friends were an integral part of his life. Preceded in death by parents, grandparents, and numerous beloved family members, he is survived by sister, Vickie Butler (Larry), of Newport, TN; nephew, Ben (Jill) Butler and their children Jacob Quinton and Tori Quinton of Parrottsville, TN; aunt, Wanda Weigel of Concord, TN; and many cousins and other devoted friends. The family will long remember the overwhelming kindness demonstrated by those known and unknown and are especially grateful for the skilled hands of the medical teams, especially Doug Ford and the staff at NHC, and others who provided comfort, compassion, and spiritual support. A special tribute is bestowed upon Terrie Roderick of Knoxville, whom Gaylon often referred to as his angel and who was a companion for the many activities they enjoyed through the years and who gave selflessly, especially during the darkest of days of his declining health. Visitation will be 5:30 - 8:00 p.m. on Friday, August 22, 2014, at Bridges Funeral Home and the service will conclude in prayer by Rev. Jerry DeZearn. A graveside memorial led by Dr. Don Garner will be held 10:00 a.m., Saturday, at Asbury Cemetery located at 5100 Cemetery Road, Knoxville 37914, with full military honors. Gaylon took pleasure in helping others so, in lieu of flowers, please donate to a
or to the Carson-Newman University Student's First campaign, PO Box 529 Jefferson City, TN 37760. Funeral arrangements by Bridges Funeral Home on 5430 Rutledge Pike. www.bridgesfuneralhome.com
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Bridges Funeral Home
5430 Rutledge Pike Knoxville, TN 37924
Published in Knoxville News Sentinel from Aug. 22 to Aug. 23, 2014