James A. “Jim” Burns, SMSGT USAF (Ret.)

Burns, James A. “Jim” SMSGT USAF (Ret.) Age 70 – Jul 18, 2009 Bellevue, NE, formerly of Nashville, TN. Preceded in death by parents, Katherine Marie and Martin Joseph; sister, Mary Catherine “Sissy” West; many family pets including “Lady” and “Winston”. Survived by daughters, Rhonda Renee Burns and her son John Leland Channing Burns, Christine Diane Byous, husband Mark, and their son Gunnar James; stepson, Matthew; brothers, Martin J. Burns, Jr., William F. Burns, Johnny E. Burns; many beloved nieces, nephews and cousins; ex-wife, Dorothy E. Millbyer; close friends and wonderful neighbors; faithful pets, “Winston” and “Little Bear”. Retiring as a Senior Master Sergeant, Jim was a proud member of the United States Air Force for 27 years. A Vietnam veteran, Jim’s decorations include the Distinguished Flying Cross, Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal with Four Oak Leaf Clusters, Air Force Commendation Medal with Two Oak Leaf Clusters, Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with Valor and Four Oak Leaf Clusters, Vietnam Service Medal with Eight Oak Leaf Clusters, and many other awards and decorations. Life member of VFW Post 2280, where he earned “All American Post Commander” status, he went on to be elected “District Commander.” In addition, Jim was a life member of VFW “Cooties” Division, American Legion Post 339, Disabled American Veterans, 40th Bomb Wing Association, and member of 55th Strategic Reconnaissance Association. Jim was proud of serving with so many extremely fine and brave military members. He flew over 250 combat missions with the 55th Strategic Reconnaissance Wing and the 307th Bomb Wing. Jim went on to serve the 55th Wing and the USAF for six more years as a civilian member after his military retirement. He has battled lung and prostate cancer since August 2002. Jim was extremely proud of his two daughters and grandsons, Gunnar and John. If I was too harsh, hurt or wronged you in any way, “I am sorry” If you me “you are forgiven.” “May the road rise to meet you, may the wind be always at your back, may the sun shine warm upon your face, may the rains fall soft upon your fields, and, until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of His hand.” Notre Dame Fan forever, “Go Irish!” “God bless you and our great country!” VISITATION Tuesday, July 21st, 6-9pm with Vigil Service at 6pm at Bellevue Memorial Funeral Chapel, 2202 Hancock St., Bellevue, NE. FUNERAL MASS Wednesday, July 22nd, 10am at St. Mary Catholic Church, Bellevue. Christian Burial at Bellevue Cemetery with Full Military Honors by Offutt AFB Honor Guard. In lieu of flowers, Jim asked that memorials be directed to Fr. Ryan High School, Nashville, TN, in his name.

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