February 14, 1930 ~ December 6, 2007
Keith Wilson Burns, a 45-year resident of Redondo Beach was born February 14, 1930 in Middlesbrough, England; departed this life and began his final voyage into eternal peace in his sleep on December 6, 2007 at the age of 77. As a merchant mariner, Keith went to sea at the age of 17 and was proud to work his way up from deck-hand, to boson, to officer, and ultimately to an Unlimited Master Mariner (any vessel upon any oceans). Keith enjoyed a career that took him to many ports around the world, time and time again on both government and private research and exploration vessels. Keith loved the different cultures; enjoyed meeting and talking to the local people, and savored the ethnic foods.
Keith emigrated from England to Canada in the 1960's, where he met and married the woman of his dreams, E. Betty Burns, in Alberta, Canada on September 9, 1962. Keith and Betty traveled to the South Bay on their honeymoon, where they settled in Redondo Beach, Keith became a naturalized citizen of the United States â€¦.and they never left! Keith was preceded in death by Betty in 1990, and will continue to cherish her memory through eternity.
A veteran of the Korean War while in England; Keith, while in his 60's, was proud to once again serve his country, the United States, in both Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm on board the U.S.N.S. Capella (T-AKR-293), supporting United States military missions in the Persian Gulf.
Keith loved his time on the sea as much as he loved his time in Redondo Beach. Keith was a 33-year member of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks No. 1378 of Redondo Beach, as well as a member of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks No. 906 of Santa Monica, and the Loyal Order of Moose Lodge No. 1873 or Redondo Beach, and the S.S. Lane Victory Merchant Marine Veterans Memorial.
Upon retirement, Keith took a more active role in the community, spending much of his time with his favorite charities, the Redondo Beach Elk's, and the Redondo Beach Moose, where he enjoyed cooking, performing building maintenance, fund-raising for their charities and playing Santa Clause for the children. Keith was honored to become a Jolly Cork of the Elk's, and also became an Officer of the Elk's, serving many years as both a Trustee and a fixture of the Lodge. Keith was an avid reader, gardener and chef. His life-long love for animals was demonstrated in caring for anything from a stranded sea mammal to the homeless and sick pets and wildlife of the community. Keith loved to attend social functions and touched the hearts of many!
Keith is survived by his children, Sandra and husband, Robert, Bungarden of Chester, VA and, Sharon Burns of Redondo Beach, CA; grandchildren, William and Kathryn Bungarden; and, numerous family members from Canada and England.
He will be remembered for his love of his family, for his devotion to friends, and for his love of the seas. Keith will also be remembered for his patience sitting with his grandson and teaching him to splice rope for Boy Scouts, as well as for his gentleness to listen with enthusiasm to the stories of his granddaughter. He will be remembered and deeply missed by all of the people and the animals lives he touched!
Services are planned as follows: visitation at Rice Mortuary in Torrance, CA on Sunday, December 16, 2007 from 11:00 am-2:00 pm; Funeral Service at Rice Mortuary in Torrance, CA on Sunday, December 16, 2007 at 2:00 pm; and, Celebration of Keith's Life immediately following funeral service at the Redondo Beach Elk's Lodge. Internment/graveside service at Green Hills Memorial Park in Rancho Palos Verdes, CA on Tuesday, December 18, 2007 at 2:00 pm. In lieu of flowers, please consider donations to the Elk's National Foundation and/or the S.S. Lane Victory Merchant Marine Veterans Memorial.
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