John William (Bill) Burdett, age 82, of Gatesville, passed away on Friday morning, July 16, 2021 at his home.
Funeral services will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday, July 20, 2021 at Scott’s Funeral Home Chapel, with Rev. Matt Dossey and Dr. Lynn Parks officiating. Burial with Masonic Rites, under the auspices of Gatesville Masonic Lodge #197 A.F. & A. M. will follow at Restland Cemetery. The family will receive visitors one hour prior to services at the funeral home.
Bill was born in West Point, Georgia on November 13, 1938 to John and Myrtis Bishop Burdett. He grew up in Alabama, Kentucky, and Louisiana. In 1951, he moved to Gatesville, where he attended school. He was a natural athlete in all sports, but especially excelled in football. He fell in love and married his high school sweetheart, Florence Sue Keener on June 2, 1956 at Keener Chapel Methodist Church in Gatesville.
Bill was a hard worker, a jack of all trades and when he did anything, he was all in! So over the years, he had a successful career in a variety of professions, and was involved in many activities. Bill worked as a barber at Ft. Hood and in Gatesville and for a time, he even owned his own barber shop. He then worked as a painter in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Texas. He was a painter of many things, such as homes, large bridges, Ft. Hood military barracks, and even painted the Drive-In Theater’s big screen. Bill loved Texas and moved here just as soon as he could! He always considered himself a Texan, even though he was born in Georgia. His painting job took him out of Texas at times, but he made sure he and Sue were in Texas before their babies were born because they had to be Texans. In Texas, Bill continued working as a painter, contractor, and builder. He painted homes in Gatesville, Copperas Cove, and Killeen. He built many homes including four for his family. Bill had a gift and talent for woodworking. He built beautiful pieces of furniture and clocks. He was a rural mail carrier and retired after 29 years of service. Bill was a member of the Methodist Church, member and Past Master of Gatesville Masonic Lodge #197 A.F. & A.M. and Waco Scottish Rite Bodies.
Bill was an avid outdoorsman! He loved hunting and fishing of every kind and went on many hunting and fishing trips during his life, hunting deer, quail, dove, turkey, and squirrel. Bill loved fishing for catfish, bass, and crappie. Fishing for catfish and hunting deer were his favorites. He has provided many families in Coryell County with deer meat and fish over many years. Bill just had a love for animals and during his life, he raised bird dogs, snow quail, and roosters. He owned and raised cattle at his ranch in Jonesboro. Bill also owned four racehorses and enjoyed going to the horse races. Playing dominoes with his friends in Jonesboro was a favorite activity until his health declined. Bill was a sports enthusiast. He enjoyed watching his grandchildren and great-grandchildren play in a variety of sports and activities. He especially loved six-man football. Bill played softball for many years with the Gatesville Jaycees and coached youth basketball and baseball. Bill had many accomplishments over the years, but he always said he was most proud of his wife, daughters and their families. He counted them as his greatest accomplishments. He always insisted his girls get a college education and they accomplished his request. Bill always valued his friends, they were very important to him and considered them as family.
Bill was preceded in death by his parents, John and Myrtis Burdett; daughter, Jacqueline Dawn Burdett; grandson, John Paul Massingill; and his mother and father in-law, Jessie and Nora Keener, who he loved like parents. He was also preceded in death by his beloved dog, Mollie Burdett.
He is survived by his wife of 65 years, Florence Sue Keener Burdett, three daughters, Kimberly Lynn Patterson and husband, Buster, Gwendolyn Sue Grant and husband, LaMont, Angela Faith Meyers and husband, Joepaul; sister, Sue Robinson and husband, Mike; grandchildren, Matthew Massingill and wife, Stephanie, Kelly Burdett Grant Murphy and husband, Chase, Christy Klein and husband, Waylen, Robert Patterson, Matthew Patterson, and wife, Kristina; great-grandchildren, JP Austin Massingill, Aspen Lynlee Massingill, Adam Matthew Massingill, Wyatt Klein, Madi Patterson, Easton Patterson, KyAnne and Aubrey; and by many nieces, nephews, and friends.
In lieu of flowers, Bill requested memorials be made to honor the memory of his late grandson, John Paul Massingill Memorial Scholarship Fund, Jonesboro I.S.D, c/o Tommie Necessary, P.O. Box 125, Jonesboro, TX 76538.