Violet Lorraine Jackson Burnett, 88, formerly of Paola, died May 8, 2012. Visitation 12-1 p.m., service 1 p.m. Tuesday, Penwell-Gabel Paola Chapel, 305 N. Pearl St., Paola. Burial Paola Cemetery. Mem. USD 368 Endowment Association.
Published in Kansas City Star on May 13, 2012
Violet Lorraine Jackson Burnett, 88, a former Paola, KS resident, died Tuesday, May 8, 2012, at Cushing Memorial Hospital in Leavenworth, KS.
In spite of having a stroke in the early 1990's, she continued to live independently in Paola for approximately 20 years thereafter before moving into full time assisted care facility.
Violet was born February 24, 1924, in Paola, as the older of two daughters to George and Mary Jane Jackson. Both of her parents, graduates of Pittsburg State Teachers College, died by the time she was 10 years old. Violet and her sister were then raised by relatives, John and Willa Pratt, who made a death bed promise to Violet's mother that they would do so.
Violet graduated from Lincoln High School in 1941. She received several academic scholarships then followed her parents' footsteps to Pittsburg State Teachers College. During World War II, she worked at the Sunflower Munitions Plant, joining the ranks of many women who emulated "Rosie the Riveter."
Violet later met Clifford LeRoy Burnett in Olathe. They married then traveled extensively as a result of his enlistment in the U.S. Air Force. The family lived in Colorado, France and Michigan with their children as an active duty military family.
Violet then became the consummate stay at home mother of the fifties and sixties who took her duties to hearth and home seriously. After the family returned to civilian life in Paola, Violet began working outside of the household. Her professional career was both, diverse and distinguished by significant accomplishments, activities and achievements including 25 years of service at the Osawatomie State Hospital during which she became a Certified Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselor before retiring.
Violet will be remembered as a firm yet kind and caring person, who gave of herself to make daily life better for all and never "sat on the pity pot." Violet loved Paola. She was an active member of St. James A.M.E. Church where she sang in the choir, played piano as music minister, and helped as needed according to her gifts and blessings.
Violet is survived by sons Richard Pratt, Nathaniel Pratt, Christopher Burnett, Donnie Burnett, and Keith Burnett and by daughters Joyce Burnett, Bonnie Burnett Smith, and Mary Burnett. She was predeceased by son Michele Antoine Burnett and daughter Penny Lynn Burnett-Reindl.
Two of Violet's 9 children graduated from her Alma Mater, Olathe High School. The remaining 7 children graduated from Paola High School. All of her children advanced to studies at various colleges and universities. Violet leaves a legacy of Olatheans and Paolans who can live their best life.
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