Cover photo for Thomas Lee Burns's Obituary
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1952 Thomas 2018

Thomas Lee Burns

August 17, 1952 — June 24, 2018


Thomas L. Burns, age 65, of Wausau, passed away unexpectedly on June 24, 2018 in Milwaukee. He was born August 17, 1952 in Wausau, the son of James and Janet (Imm) Burns.
After being honorably discharged from the Air Force, where he was a translator, Tom traveled throughout the US, eventually coming back to Wisconsin to attend UW Stevens Point and later UW Milwaukee. He moved to Madison after meeting his wife, Andrea (Hixson) Burns, and soon had their first child, Melissa, in October of 1991. Matthew, their son, was born two years later in December of 1993. Tom worked countless hours at Monroe Truck Equipment, and later Johnson Industries International, to provide a comfortable life for his family. When he was not working, he could often be found fishing with his children. He could build or make anything he put his mind to, with only the help of one of his meticulous drawings. He loved music, and to this day still has an unbelievable extensive record collection. He was not a man of many words, but was an excellent man none-the-less, giving endlessly to those he loved, with no expectation of anything in return. In September of 2016, Tom's first grandchild, Harper, was born and he left his family in awe, as he was the best grandpa a little girl could ever hope for.
Tom is survived by his mother, Janet Burns, who instilled an incredible strength and stubbornness in him; his children, Melissa (Chris) Burns, and Matthew Burns, who are sorry for the grey hair or two they may have caused; granddaughter Harper Mikel, who will miss her papa very much; siblings Michael Burns, Robert (Colleen) Burns, Patrick (Leslie) Burns, Lori (Scott) Siejkowski, and Linda Moreland; many nieces and nephews; life long best friend Johnathon Young Eagle; and Brandon Almanza, who he thought of as a son.
He is preceded in death by his father, James Burns.
A small service and memorial will be held at his mother, Janet's house on Saturday, July 7 at 1:00pm. Please email his daughter, Melissa, at melissioso@gmail.com for details. Memorial donations can be made to Melissa Burns at melissioso@gmail.com.
"And then it seemed to him that as in his dream in the house of Bombadil, the grey rain-curtain turned all to silver glass and was rolled back, and he beheld white shores and beyond them a far green country under a swift sunrise." --J.R.R. Tolkien
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