Robert L. Burke, 89, of Medway, died peacefully at the Eliot House in Natick on December 14. Bob was predeceased earlier this year by his beautiful "bride" of 65 years, Marlyn (Haynes) Burke. He is the beloved father of Andrea Burke of Franklin. Born in Natick, June 7, 1924, the son of the late John F. and J. Christine (Molloy) Burke, Bob grew up in Natick where he attended St. Patrick's parochial school through junior high school where he was president of his class. He then transferred to Natick High School where he graduated on his birthday in 1943. Bob distinguished himself in many sports especially as fullback on the football team and in hockey. After high school, he enlisted in the U.S. Army and flew airplanes in World War II in the Pacific. He was shot down on his 21st birthday but escaped. His love of flying remained throughout his life and he reenlisted as a pilot, this time in the Air Force during the Korean Conflict. After his honorable discharge, he returned to civilian life and attended the University of Cincinnati where he received a certificate in aeronautical science. Bob was employed outside of aviation though for many years too including General Motors, Gabriel Electronics, Medfield State Hospital and the Charles River Pollution Control Water District. Bob also loved music and was a member of a local barbershop quartet for several years. He was quite the character in Town where many affectionately nicknamed him the Nigh Mayor of Medway. He enjoyed dressing up for a holiday. He and his bride loved to walk and traversed the Town in their senior years. He was always grateful for the kindness of is neighbors who were like a second family to him. Bob was the last of eight siblings; in addition to his daughter he is survived by many nieces and nephews. Bob will be mourned and missed by his incredibly supportive neighbors and many friends, particularly his loyal companion, Bill Britton of Franklin. His funeral will be held on Thursday December 19 from the Ginley Crowley Funeral Home (www.ginleyfuneralhomes.com) 3 Barber Street, Medway at 9:15 followed by a funeral mass in St. Joseph Church at 10:00. Burial will be in St. Joseph Cemetery. Calling hours will be on Wednesday from 3-8p.m. In lieu of flowers, a remembrance can be made to Rhode Island Public Television, 50 Park Lane, Providence, R.I. 02907, as he faithfully watched their Lawrence Welk programing, a show that brought him great pleasure in his senior years.
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Ginley-Crowley Funeral Home
3 Barber St Medway, MA 02053
Published in Milford Daily News on Dec. 16, 2013