Letter to the Editor

Jack T. Burnett had big voice, heart to match

Friday, September 7, 2001

To the editor:

Chaffee lost a great man and friend, Jack T. Burnett. Jack never knew a stranger and always knew your name and always asked how you were doing. If you were in town on any given day, you could hear Jack's voice before you saw him. He had a big voice and a huge heart to match. Jack did things for people of this town, but you never heard about it. Jack was the kind of person who never said anything about what he did, but the person would find out later, but not from Jack.

When my husband was a teen-ager, he worked for the Signal in Chaffee. Jack always came in to shoot the breeze with everyone. My husband had two broken teeth in front, and Jack saw this. Upon leaving the Signal, Jack went to the local dentist, then returned to tell my husband that he had an appointment with the dentist. The dentist fixed his teeth, and Jack paid for it, never asking for anything in return for his thoughtfulness. Jack cared about people, regardless who you were.

When my grandmother died after her long fight with cancer, Jack was there to lend a helping hand. Within six months my father died, and again Jack was there with kinds words and help.

Years later, his kindness would shine again. When my son died, I was a single working mother with two children to support. Jack knew this. After the funeral, Jack never said a word to me about the cost. When I received the bill, weeks later, it was marked "Paid in full" with a small note: "Hope you are feeling better. Jack."

I will never forget Jack T. Burnett, for God only makes those kind of people once in awhile.


Chaffee, Mo.