Obituary: Claude J. Burris


A real hero, Claude J. Burris of Newport was promoted to Glory Tuesday, May 12, 2020, at the age of 96.  He was born to Clem and Claudia (Moore) Burris on May 16, 1923.  Burris was a faithful member of Surrounded Hill Missionary Baptist Church for 64 years serving as treasurer and song leader.  He held the position of song leader until 2016 and loved to remind everyone that he had five assistants.  He always said he didn’t like to miss church because he thought he might miss a blessing.  A veteran of WWII, Burris served in the Pacific theater and was a member of the special 158th Infantry Bushmasters.  This group of soldiers landed at Noemfoor with the mission to destroy the enemy and construct an airstrip for the B-29 bombers.  Later he served as drill sergeant training troops at Fort Chaffee in Ft. Smith for the Korean War.  He was a true patriot.  He retired from Mississippi River Fuel Corp. after 30 plus years.

In 1947 he married Maxine Green and to this union, three daughters were born.  They were married for 71 years.

“I love you and appreciate you” was something we heard at least once every single day.  Those words were not out of habit but straight from a heart of love.  He loved because Jesus loved, the rare love that comes only from God.  A very special gift that brought him joy, peace, and the best thing, contentment-real contentment.  Anyone who ever knew him witnessed and received that love.

Claude was preceded in death by his wife; Maxine Burris, his parents; Clem and Claudia (Moore) Burris, brothers; Leonard Burris and Alonzo Burris, and sister; Winnie (Burris) Smalley.

He is survived by his daughters; Sharon (Bill) Osier of Newport, Linda (John) Brinkley of Bradford, and Judy (Greg) Brannon of Newport, six grandchildren; Curt Osier of Farmington, Jack Osier, of Newport, and Jennifer (Osier) Branch of Newport, Dusty Wilkowsky of Maumelle Kacey Wilson of Forney, Texas and Josie Jordan (Brannon) Hardin of Tupelo are left to carry on his legacy.  Twelve great-grandchildren and a host of nieces and nephews as well as his church family, friends and a special friend Arnice Dinwiddie will also have many fond memories of him.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Surrounded Hill Missionary Baptist Church or St. Jude’s Hospital

Visitation will be Sunday, May 17, 2020, from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. in the Dillinger Funeral Home with graveside services being Monday, May 18, 2020, at 2:00 p.m. at Coffeyville Cemetery in Bradford.

Leave a Reply