By The Mercury

Edwin R. “Buzz” Burns, Sr., 86, of Manhattan, died Saturday at his residence.

The family provided some of the following information.

He was born on March 1, 1927, in Mayetta. He was the son of George Raymond and Lucy (Blandin) Burns.

Ed was raised on the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation Reservation, where he was a member of the Prairie Band Potawatomi Tribe.  He attended secondary education classes in Holton. Following a tour of duty with the U.S. Armed Services, he returned home and finished his senior year of high school in Circleville.

In August of 1945, Ed was drafted into the U.S. Army, where he served with the 10th Army Combat Engineer Battalion with an assignment to Okinawa.  His military honors included being the recipient of the Army Occupation Medal, the WW II Victory Medal and the Asiatic Pacific Campaign Medal.  He was discharged in August of 1947 with the rank of Tech Sergeant. 

Ed was a member of the Our Lady of Snows Catholic Church on the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation Reservation, where he was baptized, received his first communion and went through confirmation. Upon moving to Manhattan in 1951, he joined the Seven Dolors Catholic Church.  Other memberships include the We-Ta-Se American Legion Post 410 in Mayetta, and the V.F.W. Post 1786, American Legion Post 17 and Eagles Club, all of Manhattan.

For over 20 years, Ed worked for the local Western Auto Store in Manhattan.  He later went to work for USD 383 in custodial services at the former Junior High School (now Manhattan High East Campus) and later for the Education Center. He retired from the school system following many years of service.

On July 4, 1950, in Holton, he was united in marriage to the former Bonnie Mae Hamlin.  She preceded him in death on Aug. 13, 2009. He was also preceded in death by his parents; by an infant daughter “Ann;” and by four brothers, Billie, Jim, Philip and Martin Burns.

He is survived by eight children, Sandy Spiker of Towanda, Linda Correll of Soldier, Doris Bolicki and husband Bill of Copperas Cove, Texas, Ray Burns and wife Nancy of Riley, Frank Burns and wife Donna of Manhattan, Beth Fateley and husband Kevin of Manhattan, Sharon Runyan and husband Ryan of Manhattan, and John Burns and wife Dawn of Wamego. Also surviving are his three sisters, Mary Carr and husband Darrell of Topeka, Theresa McNary and husband Wayne of Ozawkie, and Julia Kennedy and husband Skip of Topeka; and his sisters-in-law, Donna Burns of Holton, Ruth Burns of Columbus, Ga., Bernadette Burns of Wichita, and Geraldine Hamlin of Hoyt; and a brother-in-law, Dick Hamlin of Circleville. Also surviving are 24 grandchildren, 23 great-grandchildren, two great-great-grandchildren, numerous step grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

The family will receive friends from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Seven Dolors Catholic Church, located at the corner of Juliette and Pierre Streets in Manhattan.  A Vigil Service and Rosary will be at 7:30 p.m. following the visitation.

Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday at Seven Dolors Catholic Church with the Rev. Joseph S. Popelka as celebrant.  Interment with military honors will follow in the Sunrise Cemetery.

Online condolences may be left for the family through the funeral home website located at

In lieu of flowers a memorial has been established for the Riley County Seniors’ Service Center.  Contributions may be left in care of the Yorgensen-Meloan-Londeen Funeral Home, 1616 Poyntz Avenue, Manhattan, Kansas 66502.

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