Memorial contributions may be made to Immanuel Lutheran School or to the Donor's Choice in care of Pitman Funeral Home, P.O. Box 248, Wentzville, MO 63385.
Dr. Richard W. Burnett died peacefully surrounded by his wife and children on Friday, February 19, 2016. Preceeded by his parents, Richard and Mary Burnett (Sehr). Loving husband of Marilyn (Trask) for 33 years, and dearest father of Richard M. (Regina), Judith M., Laura A., Joseph W., grandfather to Simon Burnett and Nathaniel Whisenhunt. Former husband of Louise (Jackie) Burnett (d.) Eldest brother of Jack (Jo Anne), Jean, Betty, and brother-in-law to Carolyn (John) Rankin, and Kenneth (Cindy) Trask. Uncle to Jeff, Cathy, Bryan, Roger, Jennifer, Ruth, Robert (d.), Sara, Amy, Brent, Brian and great uncle to twelve.
Richard was born in Indianapolis, Indiana on February 20, 1930. He graduated from St. Phillip Neri (1944), Cathedral High School (1948), Butler University (1953) and the University of Indiana (1958). He was a veteran of the Korean War, CIC.
Dr. Burnett was a professor emeritus of the University of Missouri, St. Louis where he had been Professor of Education, and Director of the Reading Clinic from 1967 until his retirement in 1997. Along the way, he chaired the Department of Elementary and Early Childhood Education from 1980 to 1985, and again from 1992 to 1995. He was Associate Dean of the School of Education from 1986 to 1989, serving as Interim Dean during 1987-88. Through the years, Dick’s primary interest was in remedial or corrective reading at all age levels and in improving literacy instruction overall. He authored the Burnett Reading Survey Series (Scholastic), and the Adult Literacy Screening Inventory (LIFT-Missouri). In recognition of his 30 years of service to UMSL, on his retirement, the Reading Clinic was named the Richard W. Burnett Reading Clinic. Richard was a life-long member of Phi Delta Kappa International, American Psychological Association, International Reading Association, and the Suburban Reading Association.
After Retirement Dick partnered with Ed Heins to create the website, YoungSaintLouis.com., through Reading Partners, LLC. Their website helped parents and teachers support young learners’ literacy development at home and in school.
Aside from the many attributes he contributed to those in his academic life, he had a deep appreciation and solace of nature and the outdoors. He enjoyed spending time traversing trails with his favorite walking stick, relaxing on a lake at Innsbrook, or reading peacefully in what he referred to as his “Reading Nook.” This was where he found his harmony and comfort. He loved feeding and watching birds while chasing away the squirrels. Dick touched the lives of many, and he will be deeply missed.
Dick was a member of Immanuel Lutheran Church, Wentzville, Missouri.