Kenneth Iber Burke passed away on November 30, 2013 at home with family members at his side. He was born on August 21, 1933 to Lloyd and Nora McNeal Burke in Covert, Michigan. For much of Ken's childhood his family resided in Florida, and he considered himself a Florida boy. "I grew up in florida in a bathing suit" he liked to say. He and his sisters made many happy memories when they lived in Key West at the western tip of the Florida Keys.
Following high school at Forest Lake Academy in Apopka, Florida and working as a printer and a tile setter, Ken was drafted into the United States Army. He served from May of 1953 to April of 1955. Then, G.I. Bill in hand, he entered Southern Missionary College (now Southern Adventist University) in Tennessee. At "Southern" he majored in chemistry and became acquainted with Ann Cunningham to whom he would be married for fifty-three years.
Ken took his postgraduate studies at Clemson University, Vanderbilt University and Florida State University. At Florida State he received his Ph.D., later he added an RD to his name. Ken was employed at Loma Linda Foods (Eastern Division), Union College and Southern Missionary College before his appointment to Loma Linda University. He began teaching at Loma Linda University in 1974, going from full time to part time in 2003. In 2010, he completed his teaching career, hold the title Professor Emeritus.
"Dr. Burke" never lost his appreciation for craftsmanship and manual labor. To him, the janitor and the professor were all one. Ken loved working with tools. He enjoyed setting out tomato plants or canning his own apple sauce. But while he worked hard professionally and at home, over the years his heart also reached out to Christian missions around the world. Not surprisingly, he asked that in lieu of flowers, his friends might consider a donation to Students in Mission Service, c/o Loma Linda University Health, Office of Philanthropy, P.O. Box 2000, Loma Linda, California 92354-0200.
Ken Burke will be remembered by students, colleagues, neighbors and friends from near and far. Ken is survived by his wife Ann, daughters Sabrina (Kaye) Maloney of Tampa, Florida and Susan Burke of Aromas, California and his son Daniel Burke of Riverside, California. He is also survived by his sisters Jean Bloodworth of Apopka, Florida and Darlene Ward of Rabun Gap, Georgia and nieces, nephew and six grandchildren. Ken was preceded in death by his son, Tom Burke.
Memorial service Sunday, January 12, 2014, at 3:00pm, at Campus Hill Seventh Day Adventist Church, 11057 Hill Drive, Loma Linda, California.
Arrangements were entrusted to Weaver Hughes Mortuary, Yucaipa, California.