Johnny Ernest “Squirrel” Burnette, Sr., age 86, of Marion, North Carolina passed away on Friday, November 23, 2018 at Autumn Care of Marion with his loving family by his side. A native of Mitchell County, Ernest was born on April 27, 1932 to the late Plato and Mamie Burnette.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife of fifty-six years, Virginia Haynes Burnette, two brothers, JP Burnette and Howard Burnette and one sister, Mabel Lyons.
For over thirty years, Ernest worked in the furniture industry, Drexel Henredon. He was a Korean Conflict veteran of the U.S. Army. In his spare time, he enjoyed going fishing, watching western’s and was an avid Atlanta Braves fan. Ernest had read the Bible through numerous times and was very proud of his Baptist Christian faith. He was a member of Refuge Baptist Church. He loved his Lord and family with all his heart.
He is survived by two daughters, Debbie Letterman and Michelle Gentry (Brian); two sons, Johnny Ernest Burnette, Jr. (Sonya) and Dean Burnette (Dawn) all of Marion. Also surviving Ernest are thirteen grandchildren; twenty-four great grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.
The family will receive friends on Monday, November 26, 2018 from 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. at Beam Funeral Service. A funeral service will take place on Tuesday, November 27, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. at the funeral home with Brother Brian Gentry and Brother Archie Cook officiating. Interment will take place following the service at Burnette Cemetery with military honors provided.
The family would like to say “Thank you” to the staff of Autumn Care of Marion for the special love and care shown to Ernest and his family.