March 20, 2019


John William Burns, Sr.
December 5, 1925 - March 15, 2019

Funeral services will be held at 9:30am on Friday, March 22, 2019 at Hathorn Funeral Home in Columbia for John William Burns, Sr., 93 of Franklinton, Louisiana, who passed away Friday, March 15, 2019 in Hattiesburg. Interment will be at Southeast Louisiana Veterans Cemetery in Slidell, Louisiana. Bishop James Carney will officiate the service.

John William Burns, Sr. was loving and devoted man. He was a decorated war vet who served in the Army during World War II. He was stationed in both France and Germany and received, along with other honors, a bronze star for alerting his troop to approaching enemy soldiers, saving them from a surprise ambush.

His highest level of education was the third grade, however, he taught himself algebra and geometry and went on to become one of the best, most sought after sheet metal workers in North America. He was a master welder and traveled the entire country designing and manufacturing duct work and ventilation systems for paper and box mills. Even though he worked on the road, he always made sure his wife and three sons received his paychecks and was happy to live in the cab of his truck and eat meals of potted meat, snack cakes, and “cold drinks”.

The love for his family continued through the adult lives of his children. Whether it was paying for college or giving homes, cars, etc. He and his wife always made sure that their sons were taken care of and wanting for nothing. His love extended beyond his family and he was the first to lend a helping hand or any of his equipment or tools to his neighbors.

He loved to garden and electronics and was always up to date on the latest gadgets even well into his eighties and nineties. At any family function or event, he could be found with a video recorder or two. His greatest possessions were the shelves full of home recordings of he and his family members singing karaoke and his home videos.

When he retired, he and his wife spent their days catering to their grandchildren. Whether it was trips to Disney, the beach, the garden to pick fresh vegetables, or the fish house up the road from their house they made life special for their grandkids! They made sure that their house was always equipped with four-wheelers, swimming pools, swing sets, computers, and all the things needed to keep kids playing outside in pretty weather and keep them happy inside during bad weather. He always made sure that the kids had something covering their feet and wouldn’t allow them to run around without slippers or socks for fear that they’d “catch a cold”. He will be greatly missed, but we rejoice that he is in a better place and will soon be reunited with his beloved wife.

He was preceded in death by his Wife, Donna Burns; and his Parents. He is survived by two Sons, John Burns, Jr., James Burns, Sr.; six Grandchildren, Maggie Ingram (Nik), Katie Foster (J.D.), Jenna Burns, James David Burns, Jr., Samuel Scovoto Burns, Nanett Burns.

Hathorn Funeral Home in Columbia is in charge of the arrangements.

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