Burton Barr, 91, Wilton Center

Burton H. Barr, age 91, of Wilton Center, passed away peacefully on Sunday, June 18, at his home with his loving family at his side.

Burton is survived by his two daughters, Linda “Lin” (Joseph Zdziarski) Barr and Lori (Pete) Slattery; “favorite” granddaughter Kaylin (Sam) Barnes; grandson and best friend Jake Slattery; grandson John Zdziarski; grandson-in-law Jon Allen; bonus grandchildren Cori Kassib and Cameron Martin; great-grandchildren Ellie, Emily, and Ethan Allen; sister Marian Krapf; sister-in-law Nance Tucker; and numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and friends. Burton was preceded in death by his parents Howard and Edith (nee Stauffenberg) Barr, wife Marilyn L. (nee Tucker) Barr (2023), son Kevin Barr (1977), granddaughter Cheryl (Zdziarski) Allen (2023), brothers-in-law Tom Tucker and Wayne Krapf, and farm partner, Garry Janney.

Burton was born and raised in Wilton Center and remained a lifelong resident. He was a graduate of Wilton Center Elementary School and Peotone Community High School. Burton attended Purdue University and earned an associate degree. After much dedication and commitment, he also received the American FFA Degree, which is the highest degree possible as a member of the Future Farmers of America.

Burton was an active part of his community. He was a lifelong member of St. Paul United Church of Christ and served on the church council for countless years, past director of Andres and Wilton Grain Company (21 years), past trustee of Manhattan Fire Protection District (26 years), past director of First Bank of Manhattan (36 years), past associate director of the Will South-Cook Soil and Water Conservation District, just to name a few.

Burton was dedicated to his family, as he was a 4-H leader, attended his daughter’s basketball and softball games, and was a fan of all youth sports. Burton also kept up with college basketball religiously. He enjoyed golfing and even shot a hole-in-one once. For 37 years, Burton hosted the “Burton Barr Open.” Family and friends would come from all over to attend; this event was something he truly loved. Burton was a lifelong farmer of livestock and crops, maintaining the 160-year-old family farm, and always running Case International Harvester machinery. In the last month, Burton could still be seen mowing his lawn.

Burton was a loving husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, brother, uncle, cousin, and friend to many. He will be truly missed by all who knew and loved him. The Barr family would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to Burton’s caregivers, Helen, and her friend Penny, for making these last weeks of Burton’s life here on earth joyful and memorable.

Funeral services for Burton were held on Thursday, June 22, at the Forsythe Gould Funeral Home in Manhattan, with Reverend Carol Currier-Frighetto officiating. Burton was laid to rest next to his wife Marilyn at Wilton Cemetery, Wilton Center.

In lieu of flowers, donations in the Barr family name to one of the following: the Manhattan Fire Department, P.O. Box 65, Manhattan, IL 60442, Megan Bugg Global Rhabdo Research Laboratory, by visiting https://cc-tdi.kindful.com/?campaign=1169029 or Cheryl Marie Allen, class of 1999 nursing scholarship fund at Providence Catholic High School https://www.providencecatholic.org/support-pchs/donate/would be most appreciated.

Arrangements were entrusted to the Forsythe Gould Funeral Home, 507 S. State St., Manhattan, IL 60442, 815-478-3321, www.forsythegouldfh.com.


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