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Thomas G. Burns

May 12, 1931 ~ April 12, 2021 (age 89)

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Thomas G. Burns, 89:

Thomas G. Burns passed away peacefully after a brief illness on April 12, 2021.  He is survived by his wife of 71 years, Mary Lou Burns, and his loving children: daughter Peggy, son Paul, daughter Patty and husband Tom, daughter Terri, daughter Lizzie and husband Mark, son Tom and wife Stacey. He left seven beautiful grandchildren, Samantha and husband Ray, Patrick and partner Jenna, Molly and husband Luke, Danny and wife Caity, Kelly and husband Kevin, Ryan and Meagan as well as four adoring great-grandchildren.

He was born on May 12, 1931, in Sayre PA, as the seventh child of William (Hennesey) Burns and Olive May (Herrick) Burns.  He was pre-deceased by all five of his brothers, Bob, Jack, Bill, James (aka Don) and Paul. He is survived by his only sister Pat, whom he adored until the day he died.

He met Mary Lou, the love of his life, while attending elementary school.  He was blind in one eye from a childhood accident, but often told the story that while in first grade, she unexpectedly ran to the back of the classroom and kissed him.  “I spent the next eleven years with my good eye on her.”  He would marry her after graduating from Athens High School where he was a star athlete in both football and baseball.

After high school, he worked various jobs to support his growing family, in time becoming known as an excellent carpenter.   He started his own business as a kitchen cabinet maker/installer and eventually opened Burns Kitchen Center in Athens and Waverly.  In 1981, he moved his business to Ithaca, NY and was active in professional organizations and served as the president of the NKBA – National Kitchen and Bath Association.

After selling his businesses he retired to Florida and enjoyed many years there, until health concerns brought him back to his family roots in the Valley.

He always felt that he was especially lucky to be the 7th born child in an Irish family.  May he rest in Peace.   

Due to COVID-19 the family plans to have a private memorial service later this year.  In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Waverly Public Library.

Arrangements have been entrusted to the care of the Thomas Cremation and Funeral Service, 1297 Elmira St. Sayre, Pa. Those wishing to leave a sympathy message may do so at


May the road rise to meet you.

May the wind be always at your back.

May the sunshine warm upon your face.

May the rains fall softly upon your fields until we meet again.

May God hold you in the hollow of his hands.



To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Thomas G. Burns, please visit our floral store.


You can still show your support by sending flowers directly to the family, or by planting a memorial tree in the memory of Thomas G. Burns


Waverly Public Library
18 Elizabeth St., Waverly NY 14892
Tel: 1-607-565-9341

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