Services for Gene “Burgey” Burgett, 92, of Chariton, will be Tuesday, January 24, 2023, at 10:00 a.m. at the Pierschbacher Funeral Home in Chariton. Interment will follow at the Mt. Zion Cemetery. Family will receive friends on Monday, January 23, 2023, from 4:00 until 7:00 p.m. at the funeral home.
Memorials may be made in Burgey’s name to the Iowa State Fair Campgrounds or Mt. Zion Cemetery.
Ronald Eugene Burgett was born April 5, 1930, to Ronald “Bus” and Martha Burgett at their home near Oakley, Iowa. He went by his middle name, shortened to Gene, and was later called Burgey by all who knew him. He grew up on the family farm and loved working alongside his father. Burgey attended country school near Oakley as a boy and then attended Chariton High School.
Burgey met Betty Johnson when he was 13 years old. They dated for several years before marrying on New Years Day, 1949, in Russell, Iowa. Burgey worked at Hy-Vee Distribution Center for two years before deciding to farm full-time. He had a passion for farming and did so his entire life. He raised sheep, cattle, pigs, and row cropped. In 1971, Burgey bought his first big baler and custom baled until the mid-80s. He passed his love for the farm on to his sons and many of his grandchildren. Following retirement, he continued to help his sons on the farm with both livestock and crops.
He also worked for Elwin Allen Trenching, doing trench work and pulling underground telephone cables. This led to his love of operating construction equipment, especially dozer. Later in life Burgey and his son, Ron, owned and operated Burgett Body and Repair out of his garage. They repaired and painted many tractors, farm equipment, diesel engines, cars, and trucks.
The couple were blessed with five children: Connie, Don, Bonnie, Lonnie, and Ron "Sam”. They made sure that their children appreciated the hard work of farm life by giving them an early education in choring. The family worked hard together, but they played just as hard.
Their family looked forward to attending races at the racetrack north of Chariton. Burgey helped at the track during races and worked alongside Doyle Gripp on the cars. The family enjoyed the 4th of July celebration in Chariton when they would take a break from working and cut loose. When the kids were in high school, Burgey bought a new boat. The family, along with many friends, spent countless hours on the water every summer.
The Burgett family also looked forward to the Iowa State Fair every year. They have camped on “Old Mill Hill” for seventy-five years and counting. Burgey cut the front off an old school bus and converted it into a camper. Now the hill is filled with campers of his kids and grandkids. Camping with his family was something that he looked forward to every year. The memories made there were some of his favorites.
Burgey could make and fix anything and everything. He was always quick to help others and instilled that value in his children. Even though times were often tough, the hard work kept the Burgett family close. Burgey looked forward to Sunday dinners with his children and grandchildren. He was an ornery grandpa and loved teasing his grandkids and playing games with them. Family was always the most important thing in his life.
Burgey passed away January 20, 2023. He will be dearly missed by his wife of 74 years, Betty Burgett; children: Connie (Gene) Gwinn, Don (Janet) Burgett, Bonnie (Bruce) Smith, Lonnie (Garry) Gwinn, and Ron “Sam” (Noelle) Burgett; grandchildren: Carla (Gavin) Vanderpool, Cami Uhlenhopp, Corey (Jacque) Gwinn, Todd (Dena) Burgett, Tara (Jeremy) Sheets, Katie (Victor) Holzworth, Amanda (Pat) Lusmann, Curt (Stacy) Smyser, TJ (Kenna) Smyser, Katie (Randy) Pace, Kelley (Tracy) Reece, Casey Gwinn, Nicole (Adam) Williams, Shane (Jade) Burgett, and Austin (Kaitlyn) Burgett; great grandchildren: Andrea, Teagan, Colt, Cara, Brittany, Brandon, Jake, Josie, Payton, Parker, Grayson, Reece, Hunter, Ellie, Dottie, Lexi, Brynli, Grady, Maddox, Braxton, Dexlan, Haley, Riley, Jace, Paige, Atley, Quinlynn, Ellersyn, Bexleigh, Owen, Rider, Finlee, Louie, and Gracie; and 7 great great grandchildren.
Burgey was preceded in death by his parents, Ronald “Bus” and Martha Burgett; grandson, Joey Smith; and great grandson, Camden Williams.
The livestream can be viewed through the following link: https://my.gather.app/remember/gene-burgey-burgett