Vernon (Vern) George Burghart passed away at age 83 on July 3, 2021 at Kindred Hospital in Seattle, WA after an extended illness. Born on June 20, 1938, Vern was the seventh of eight children of Albert Burghart and Barbara (Hefner) Burghart.
Vern grew up on his parents’ family farm about 2 miles northwest of Spearville, KS where he learned a strong work ethic and the value of hard work. He graduated from Spearville High School in 1956 where he participated in high school sports including football, basketball, baseball, and track. Upon graduation, Vern attended Fort Hayes State University where he earned a Bachelors of Science in Agriculture. After college, Vern joined the Army in 1960 and later spent the bulk of his time working as a Quarter Master in Idar-Oberstein, Germany until 1962 when he was honorably discharged, also touring Europe and taking a sabbatical in Australia during this time. Vern enjoyed the quality beer in Germany and always joked that he “fought the bottle of Germany.”
After a short stint working as a travelling salesman for Northrup King Seed Company, Vern began his career in public service by joining the Soil Conservation Service (SCS) agency of the USDA in 1967, where he worked for 29 years managing SCS field offices in Harrington, Whidbey Island, Goldendale, and Ellensburg. Fourteen of those years were working with the farmers of Kittitas County. Early on in his career with the SCS, Vern met the love of his life Jeanette Perron in Chehalis, WA. They married on April 11, 1970 in Bremerton, WA. and had 4 children--Dale, Doug, Mike, and Susan. Shortly after his retirement from the SCS, Vern began his second career in 1996 with the Westside Irrigation Company working as a ditch rider and retired there at the age of 78.
Above all else, Vern valued family and hard work. He showed love for his family by actively participating in their lives including helping Jeanette with her wheat weaving business, coaching sports, being a scout leader, raising animals for 4-H, and acting as CEO of his kids’ night crawler bait business.
Vern was preceded in death by his wife Jeanette Burghart; his parents Albert and Barbara Burghart; and his brothers Leonard, Harold, and Robert Burghart.
Vern is survived by his sons Dale Burghart of Spokane, WA; Doug Burghart of Port Angeles, WA; Mike Burghart of Seattle, WA; and his daughter Susan of Milton Keynes, England; his grandsons Nolan, Clayton, and Evan Burghart; his granddaughter Haley Jo Burghart; his daughters-in-law Amy and Chandra Burghart; his brothers Rich and Fran Burghart; and his sisters Millie Ruder and Jovita Christensen.
A vigil rosary service will be held on Friday, August 13, 2021 at 7 pm as well as a Memorial Mass on Saturday, August 14, 2021 at 10 am at St. Andrews Catholic Church in Ellensburg, WA to remember Vern.
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