Jay Walter Burke, 72, passed away May 12, 2016 at Teton Post Acute Care in Idaho Falls. Jay was born to Charles Eugene Burke and Mary Eva Cook Burke in Idaho Falls on October 18, 1944. He was the fifth of nine children.
Raised on a 120 acre farm in the Shelley area, he learned to drive farm equipment, and worked at all the various jobs when harvesting the spuds, hay and grain. He helped milk the eight cows by hand and fed the chickens, pigs, beef cows, sheep and horses.
His first six years of school was in the three room Jameston School, and graduated from Shelley High School in 1963. He spend a year at Idaho State University studying mechanics before serving an LDS mission in the Great Lakes from 1964 to 1966. After his mission he studied electronics at Utah Trade and Technical College in Provo, Utah.
In December of 1966 he was drafted into the US Army. After basic training he was sent to Ft. Monmouth, New Jersey. From there Jay was then transferred to Germany where he was put on a radar technician team. He would travel to other bases for six months at a time calibrating their equipment until he was discharged in 1969.
While living in Monmouth, he met and married Mary Ann Welch in September 1968, they were later divorced. To this union came six children, Robin, Rachael, Carl, Marla, Jayson and Jared.
He worked several jobs: Univac- making main frames computers, driving truck, building mattresses, and eventually worked at Intermountain Health Care in customer service in Salt Lake where he retired.
In 1992 he met Lyla Kidman in Salt Lake City and they were together for ten years.
Jay was a real handyman and enjoyed fixing, repairing and building. His collection of tools was evidence of his hobby. He enjoyed cutting, carving and painting small toys for the Idaho Falls Humanitarian Center. Jay enjoyed learning and especially history and was a member of the Sons of Utah Pioneers and the American Legion.
In 2012 Jay moved back to Idaho and moved in with his 95 year old mother to help take care of her. In 2014 they both moved to Lincoln Court. With his continuing health problems he then moved to Teton Post Acute Care where he resided until his death. He made many friends in these two homes and appreciated their kindness and friendship. Jay was appreciative of kindness and service shown to him.
He is survived by his six children, Robin (Keith) Sorensen, Rachael (Jim) Keller, Carl (Lisa) Burke, Marla (Tim) Knight, Jayson (Amber) Burke and Jared (Amy) Burke; his brothers Wallace (Jackie) Burke, Deming, New Mexico; Glen (Diana) Burke, Idaho Falls; his sisters Elaine (Bob) Park, Provo, Utah; Nona (Larry G.) Thompson, Pingree, Idaho; Anita (Larry D.) Thompson, Idaho Falls.
He was preceded in death by his parents, and three brothers, Wesley Eugene Burke, Roy Richard Burke, and Duane Evan Burke.
The families heartfelt thanks to staff at Lincoln Court, Teton Post Acute Care and Solace Hospice for their constant and professional care. Thanks also to friends and neighbors in the Taylor Ward.
Graveside services will be 12:00 p.m., Tuesday, May 17, 2016 at Fielding Memorial Cemetery with military rites by David B. Bleak Post 93. There will be a viewing from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. at Nalder Funeral Home in Shelley prior to graveside services.