Raymond LeRoy Burke, 89, of Swisher, Iowa passed away Friday November 10, 2023. A memorial service will be held on June 1, 2024 at 11 am, with a visitation beginning an hour before, at Cedar Memorial Park Chapel of Memories in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
Ray was born July 26, 1934, in Cedar Rapids to Jay John and Minnie (Holubar) Burke. He was a 1952 graduate of Franklin High School. Ray entered the Navy following high school and served as a 2nd Class Aviation Machinist Mate for 4 years. He was honored with the National Defense Medal and Good Conduct Medal. When Ray was discharged from the Navy he returned to Rockwell Collins where he worked as an Inspector/Head Machinist and retired after 37 years. While he was working, Ray attended Mt. Mercy College where he earned his bachelor's degree in education.
Ray was a member of the American Legion in Swisher for 22 years.
A devoted family man, Ray found immense joy in attending the sporting events of his children and grandchildren. His unwavering support and cheering presence created cherished memories that will echo through generations. Ray will be remembered for his willingness to extend a helping hand to anyone in need, leaving an indelible mark on the hearts of those he touched. His hands not only symbolize warmth and compassion but are also skilled in the art of crafting. He left his mark by creating essential parts for various cars, mud racers, homes and countless other projects.
Ray is survived by his beloved wife of 68 years, Eleanor Ruth (Smith) Burke; children, Corinne Holmes and Steven (Amy) Burke both of Cedar Rapids and Kevin Burke of Bridge City, TX; grandchildren, Colton Holmes, Tyler Holmes, Jordan Holmes and Cody (Hannah Rey) Burke of Cedar Rapids, Brandon (Torri Parsons) Holmes of Naperville, IL and Chelsea (Brandon Saul) Burke of Hondo, TX; sister, Frances Herrmann of Porterville, CA; lifelong best friend, Bob Siechert; and many nieces/nephews and great-grandchildren.
Ray is preceded in death by his son, Timothy Ray Burke; parents, Jay and Minnie Burke; sister Ellen (Max) Todd; brother, John (Marlene) Burke; son-in-law, Rick Holmes and many aunts/uncles, nieces/nephews and cousins.