- 70 years old
- Date of birth: Aug 17, 1945
- Place of birth:
Columbia, South Carolina, United States
- Date of passing: Aug 15, 2016
- Place of passing:
Fairfax, Virginia, United States
|Few things are harder to put up with than the annoyance of a good example - Mark Twain|
This memorial website was created in memory of our loved one, James Burke, 70, born on August 17, 1945 and passed away on August 15, 2016. We will remember him forever.
Click on photos - on right - to enlarge and see captions.
"I've been acquainted with Jimmy ever since my brother Mark started dating his sister Jean. In the many years since then, I only saw him sporadically, always at family get-togethers, but I always looked forward to talking with him, knowing that he would be full of interesting stories about his travels to exotic places in Asia and tennis tournaments all over the world. And as writers and editors, we were both interested in hearing about the other's work.
So, when I saw him this past January at another such gathering and he mentioned that he had written a book and was hoping to get it published, I asked if he would let me look at it first. He kindly consented and agreed to let me give it a final polish. In the months that followed, we met several times and emailed and spoke often, as we worked to make the book ready for publication. I was fortunate to get to spend that time with Jimmy and to get to know him better through those working sessions and through his writing.
On the surface, "Death in Darjeeling" is a cleverly plotted, deftly written thriller in which I continually found new things to admire, including the varied and artfully drawn characters and the wonderfully described settings ranging from Darjeeling to Hong Kong and D.C. to the South Carolina Low Country. But for anyone who knew Jim Burke at all, it quickly becomes apparent that the book is also a warm and loving memoir of the Burke family's exploits in China and India, and a thoughtful account of Jimmy's own life. It is the work of a man who reflected deeply about his shortcomings and his virtues and in the end had liked what he saw. Many readers will enjoy Jim's book, but his family and friends will treasure it, because Jim Burke lives within its pages."
"What to say about a friendship which lasted well over 50 years, our entire adult lives, really.
We met as freshmen at the University of South Carolina. He was this exotic young man with a British accent who had lived virtually his entire life in foreign countries. We had scarcely left the east coast, but he and my future husband, Jim, became fraternity brothers, and later brothers in arms.
We stayed in touch through letters and short visits, once in his Mother's beautiful Manhattan apartment. I think he visited us in every state in which we have lived. He attended our son's wedding in Knoxville, TN, and we had our last rendezvous in Abingdon, VA, sharing an evening at Barter Theatre and then a great meal together recalling special times and people from our pasts. When he called us a few months ago with the awful news of his diagnosis, he was essentially calling to say goodbye and though we e-mailed, we heard from him no more.
Jim lived a full life, travelling widely, enjoying his love of tennis, but mainly cherishing his friends and family.
We miss him already.
Lee and Jim Ley"
"Jim and I worked together for several years in the CIO's office at IRS and have traded chatty letters since I retired. I will miss those letters. Jim so loved to write. I was very disappointed when he told me he had put aside his great American novel but I know he was thoroughly enjoying his other retirement adventures."
"I met Jim and his family some years ago @ my church, Mulberry Methodist, Macon, GA one day when they were in Macon where their grandfather, Dr. W. B. Burke, grew up and a member of Mulberry. He and I kept in touch since then and he came back to Macon a few years ago to attend a luncheon @ my church where the program was about his late grandfather. He and I talked several times by phone, kept in touch with emails. He was a very interesting person, could be quite witty and good company. My deepest sympathy goes to Jean and Rosemary and family in the loss of their fine brother. We are so very, very sorry and know he'll be so missed."
"Jimmy had a very special childhood living in India ,China, and Greece. I have fond memories of playing with him during his families visits to the States. He had a strong sense of family that made me feel more like a sister than a cousin. I will always treasure the times we spent together on my visits to the East coast."
"I met Jim in 1989 at work, and enjoyed his company at baseball games, at the Writer's Center, and for lunch at our French Restaurant on 10th St. I'm sad that his illness was so quick and so debilitating. Wish we could have got together one more time. Don't waste opportunities to be with old friends. Some day may be too late."
Thank you for enlightened conversations with me across the divider between workstations. You are a kind and gentle soul and that was
reflected in your conversations. I thank you so much for thinking of
me and sending me those wonderful postcards from Paris. I shall miss them and you.
I walked over to our neighborhood Baptist Church to offer a prayer for you. It was closed. I then walked over to our neighborhood Catholic Church. It was open and I was able to say a short prayer while the organ music filled the space. It was very fulfilling.
So I came home and lit a candle and said a prayer for you at our Budddhist alter. "Om Mani Padme Hum"
Chukie (Your sister Mei Mei's high school friend)"
"So sad to have Uncle Jimmy leave us so quickly. I always looked forward to seeing him and hearing about his travels. I knew him in festive holiday spirits and always ready for a glass of Maritnelli's and a good conversation. Love and light to the family in this sad time.
"He was a kind and loving man. He loved going to sporting events and he would always buy me a ticket to the games he went to. I will miss him."
"Uncle Jimmy has been a fixture all my life. I have so many wonderful memories of him through the years that I will always treasure. He loved to discuss politics and play tennis and I was lucky to have participated in these beloved activities with him many times. He loved and was there for my mom, his sister Mei Mei "Meim", and for that I am grateful. I am comforted that he met both of my daughters, his grand nieces, before he left us. I will miss you Uncle Jimmy."
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