James J. Burlingame, 88, of Midland, died Nov. 8, 2012, at Tendercare of Midland following an illness. Jim was born on Feb. 18, 1924, in St. Louis, the son of the late Clifford and Frances (Hartford) Burlingame. He graduated from St. Louis High School in 1941, he was the winner of the Wheeler Trophy as the Outstanding Athlete of his senior class. Jim is an honors graduate of Michigan State University
, where he received the Sigma Delta Chi Award as the Outstanding Male Graduate in Journalism in 1947. He is also a member of the Presidents Club and is one of the newest members of the State News Hall of Fame, having been inducted with the Class of 2008.
On July 28, 1944, Jim married then Arlene Goggin. Jim and Arlene started kindergarten together and then became high school sweethearts and celebrated 56 years of marriage before her untimely passing in 2000. Surviving is son, Tom (Jennifer) Burlingame of East China, Mich.; son in-law, Joe Barscewski of Howell; grandchildren, Jeffrey (Rachel) Burlingame, Brandon Doerr, Julie Burlingame, Lauren Barscewski, and Lindsay Barscewski. Jim was preceded in death by daughter, Dianne Barscewski; and his sister, Lois Labiak.
Jim was a naval aviator during World War II
, enlisting immediately following his freshman year at General Motors
Institute of Technology. Among his decorations are the Purple Heart
and the Navy Medal for Heroism.
Burlingame has "retired" twice, first from The Dow Chemical Co. in 1985, where his final six years were spent as the director of sales promotion. He retired in 1996 as the director of communications for Michigan Molecular Institute, also in Midland. Since retirement, he has kept active providing communications counsel to West Midland Family Center, the Midland County Historical Society and the Little Forks Conservancy.
Before joining Dow in 1959, Burlingame was service promotion manager for the Pontiac Motor Division of GM, co-owner and general manager of the St. Louis Leader-Press (a weekly newspaper), advertising manager of Milliken's Department Store in Traverse City, the first editor of the Michigan Food News and a lobbyist for the Michigan Grocers and Meat Dealers Association.
During his 60-year career in the communications field, Burlingame was an active member in related trade associations, including Point-of-Purchase Advertising International (POPAI), the Direct Marketing Association (DMA), the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) and Marketing Communication Executives Association (MCEA).
Jim served as a board Member for POPAI and DMA, and was the recipient of several awards from both. He was the first advertiser member of POPAI's board and was named Man-of-the-Year in 1971 and received the President's Award in 1984. He was named a Charter Member of the POPAI Hall of Fame in 1994. He was named a direct mail spokesman for DMA in 1980. Jim also served as a member of the sales promotion committee for the ANA for seven years.
Funeral services will take place at 11 a.m., Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2012, from the Ware Smith Woolever Funeral Home, 1200 W. Wheeler St., Midland. Fr. Peter J. Gaspeny will officiate, with burial in Midland City Cemetery. Jim's family will receive friends at the funeral home on Monday from 2-4 and 6-8 p.m., and on Tuesday on from 10 a.m. until the time of service. Full military honors will be presented by the Midland Area Veterans and Department of the U.S. Navy. Those planning an expression of sympathy may wish to consider West Midland Family Center, Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church or the donor's favorite charity.