Rand Burnette
Buchanan & Cody Funeral Home, Jacksonville Chapel - Jacksonville
1100 Lincoln Ave.
Jacksonville, IL

Rand Burnette was born in Evansville, Indiana, to Mary Francis (Wurtz) Rea and Charles Dent Burnette. Here he met his eventual wife of 61 years, Patricia Bauer (Burnette). He majored in history at Wabash College while she majored in English at MacMurray College. They married after graduation on June 14, 1958. He received a master's degree in history from the University of Wisconsin and a Ph.D. in history from Indiana University.

After teaching at Carthage College (first on its Illinois campus and then in Wisconsin) Rand took a position in 1968 teaching history at MacMurray College, where he remained on the faculty until retirement. He taught a wide range of history courses and had a special interest in the Reformation, animation history and cartography. He taught generations of students American and European history and served as MacMurray's pre-law adviser for many years, helping students gain admission to some of the best law programs in the country. At MacMurray he was known for his deep scholarly knowledge, his sense of humor, his articulate (and always audible) lectures, and his love of noon-time basketball pick-up games.

Rand was a member of many organizations, including Rotary, Morgan County Historical Society, Illinois State Historical Society, Literary Union, and the NAACP. He attended Faith Lutheran Church since first moving to Jacksonville in 1968 and served as president of the congregation, among several other roles there. He remained an active member of the Jacksonville community until his death.

Rand continued to pursue his academic interests after retirement, reading academic publications (especially in cartography), publishing numerous book reviews in scholarly journals, and helping his wife, Patricia, complete a book on MacMurray founder James F. Jaquess. He was a voracious reader of both fiction and non-fiction and a loyal fan of the Chicago Cubs.

Rand is survived by his wife, Patricia B. Burnette; three children, Patrick R. Burnette (Joyce), Catherine M. Burnette and Mark W. Burnette (Kim); two grandchildren, Rand Ralph Burnette and Ryan K. Burnette; three stepgrandchildren, Kenny Robinson (Crystal), Keith Robinson and Kristen Moore (Douglas); three great-stepgrandchildren, Brian, Landon and Jackson; and two brothers, Charles Burnette (Carol) and Johnny Rea (Mardi). His third brother, Jack Burnette (Gayle), predeceased him.

A memorial service will be at 11 a.m. Saturday, March 7, 2020, at Faith Lutheran Church in Jacksonville. The family will meet friends from 9:30 to 11 a.m. Saturday, prior to the service, at the church. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be given to Faith Lutheran Church of Jacksonville, Illinois. Buchanan & Cody Funeral Home in Jacksonville is assisting the family. Condolences may be left at buchanancody.com.

Published by Jacksonville Journal-Courier from Mar. 6 to Mar. 7, 2020.
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9:30a.m. - 11:00a.m.
Memorial service
Faith Lutheran Church
Jacksonville, IL
Funeral services provided by:
Buchanan & Cody Funeral Home, Jacksonville Chapel - Jacksonville
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17 Entries
Thank you Catherine, for sharing the sad news of Rand's passing. He and I were close long time friends. I first met Rand as a PhiGammaDelta pledge at Wabash College in September, 1954. As pledges, he and I bonded in a tight friendship, which lasted through, and with Rand and Pat, way beyond our college years. Rand and I were roommates as upper classmen, allowing us to share so many joys, and adventures. Since we were both active in speech activities, we would try to get to the "pool room" in the Fiji basement ahead of the other, to practice our speeches. As for dances, Pat and Rand would help me get dates from MacMurray...which were several....for which I was appreciative. I made numerous trips to Jacksonville over those years with Rand and sometimes Pat too. What happy recollections!! My records show that we started exchanging Christmas cards and letters in 1961 which lasted, without a break through this past Christmas. Lately, I admired Rand going to see Pat every day, reading to her and just being a great husband, and friend to all. He was always such a kind, generous, man. He may be gone but not forgotten. Please extend my thoughts and prayers to Pat as she is what kept Rand in line. I send my condolences to all of your family members. It seems as though I know you personally from yearly updates from Pat's newsletters, even though I don't recall of ever meeting any of you, except perhaps Joyce at Wabash. Peace and love be with you and your dear mother. My very Best,... John Wilhelm '58.
John Wilhelm
March 29, 2020
Larry and I knew Pat and Rand through our Governor Duncan Association membership, and will never forget the times that Rand portrayed the Governor at the Christmas Galas. They both were such active, brilliant, caring and giving members of the Jacksonville community for many years. Our sincere sympathy and prayers are with the family.
Larry and Karen Ladd
March 14, 2020
Dr. Burnette was an interesting guy. I enjoyed my informal conversations with him and his wife.
Tim Kraemer
March 9, 2020
MacMurray College and Jacksonville have lost a legend. It was my GPA's good fortune not to have Dr. Burnette as a professor and pleasure to have Dr. Burnette as a colleague. Thank you for sharing him with us.
Kathy Dalton Hackman '80
March 9, 2020
It is hard to believe that Rand is no longer with us. For more than 40 years Rand was part of our life at Faith, MacMurray, and in Rotary. We commiserated over our beloved Chicago Cubs. We will miss his ready smile and compassion. We will even miss his booming voice as he read lessons during services at Faith. We are spending the winter in Texas and so could not be with you for his service. We do offer our heartfelt condolences to Patrick, Catherine, Mark, and your families. God Bless You. Larry & Mary Kuster
Larry Kuster
March 9, 2020
He was an inspirational mentor and helped shape my academic career. He will be missed. Peace.
David Fitz
March 8, 2020
We are so sorry to learn of Rand's passing. Our deepest sympathy is with you and your family.
Ken and Fran Glass
March 7, 2020
It was my pleasure to know Rand all the years I taught at Mac Murray. He was a mainstay of the college; his heart was always there. Loved to hear his booming voice in faculty meetings and he was such an open hearted guy. Sorry to hear of his death but understand that time eventually takes us all. I hope you take comfort in the swath his wide personality cut through the world. I know his faith was strong and hope it is a support to his family as well.
Marti Templin
March 6, 2020
I am so sorry to hear about Dr, Burnette's passing. Although i did not have a class with him, he was certainly a major force at MacMurray! My condolences to his wife and family.
William Stanton
March 6, 2020
I had 4 years of Dr. Burnette as my teacher/advisor and 3 as my boss. He was brilliant at both and I enjoyed every class and every task I got from him. Even typing the endless bibliographies. He was an amazing professor.

I can only imagine theres now a daily pickup basketball game up in heaven, starring Drs. Burnette and Biloz. My thoughts and prayers to the Burnette family.
Jeanne Teshler
March 6, 2020
In loving memory of Rand and with heart felt prayers, I send to you, Pat and family, my hope that in this sorrowful time, wonderful memories of time with that special man will sustain you. How fortunate many of us are to have been touched by his thoughts and knowledge. God bless you all! Fondly, an ole Mac friend and alum, Sue Large and husband Bob.
Sue Large
March 6, 2020
a loved one
March 6, 2020
I had two history courses with Dr. Burnette and loved them. He was a wonderful professor. I was sorry to hear of his passing.
Beth Welch
March 6, 2020
Taking a Rand Burnette class was part and parcel of the MacMurray experience, don't you know! Praising God for a life will lived. Condolences to those who grieve his passing. Guessing the volume in Heavenly History 833 just increased. :)
Ken Runkle '83
March 6, 2020
From a global perspective, Dr. Burnette was extraordinary. In the context of his colleagues during his tenure at MacMurray, he was brilliant and influential but extremely normal. He epitomized the qualities demonstrated by other professors, including but not limited to Dr. Ruth Rose, Dr. Hilda Hale, Dr. Suzanna Robbins, Dr. Phil Decker, Dr./Dr. Freiburg, Dr. Metcalfe, etc., etc., etc. He truly made the world a brighter place,
David Bomke
March 6, 2020
Professor Burnette was THE most influential instructor I ever had. His enthusiasm, knowledge and caring ways sustained me through many a tough time at Mac. I'm shocked at his passing but know that he is with our Lord. God's blessing to his family.
Darrell Holmquist
March 6, 2020
I am so sorry to hear of Rand's passing. He will always have a special place in my heart.

I had many wonderful history classes with Rand. I had to laugh at the note in his obituary about his (very) audible lectures. So very true! Rand was such a fantastic teacher. He was a walking encyclopedia of history and dates. Rand sat in on a class Paul Findley taught at Mac. Rand could write as fast as Paul could talk. It was amazing.

One of my favorite classes with Rand was the History of American Animation. Sounded easy - it wasn't. However, it was a great class and there are things I learned I'll never forget.

Thoughts and sympathy to the Burnette family. I loved Rand and am grateful to have known him.
Sharon Mather
March 5, 2020
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