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Originally published: 2013-08-02 09:16:10
Last modified: 2013-08-02 09:16:54

Lee McRae Burleson

Lee McRae Burleson, 89, of Roaring Creek Rd., Newland, passed away Tuesday evening, July 30, 2013, at his home.

Born July 30, 1924, in Avery County, he was a son of Charles Wesley and Dimple Viola Cooper Burleson.

Burleson was superintendant and a Deacon of Free Will Baptist Church for 50 years. A veteran of the U.S. Navy, he served during WWII. Burleson was a graduate of Lee McRae College and Appalachian State University. He retired from the Avery County School system as a driver’s education teacher. His devotion was to his family, and his enjoyment was tending his farm and vegetable gardens.

Burleson is survived by his wife of 55 years, Pauline Brown Burleson; daughter, Paula Burleson of the home; two sons, Dr. Alric Burleson of the home and Selwyn Burleson and wife, Shirley, of Roan Mountain, Tenn.; granddaughter, Megan Dakota Burleson of Roan Mountain; two sisters, Angela W. Burleson of Sterling, Va., and Bobbie Sanders and husband, William, of Four Oaks; step-grandsons, Jack Shell and wife, Rachel, of Roan Mountain, and John Shell, Jr. and wife, Amy, of Jonas Ridge;

step-great-grandchildren, Reed and Caroline Shell, both of Roan Mountain, A. J. Harmon and Dalton Turbyfield, both of Jonas Ridge, and Shad Teaster of Banner Elk. Many nieces, nephews, including a special niece, Angela Celest Burleson of Sterling, Va., also survive. He also leaves behind his church family, and his loyalty always remained with the Free Will Baptist Church.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Charles Wesley and Dimple Viola Cooper Burleson, and a sister, Emma Lou Masters.

Funeral services for Burleson will be conducted 2 p.m. Friday, Aug. 2, 2013, at the Free Will Baptist Church, officiated by the Rev. Troy Smith. The family will receive friends 12:30 to 2 p.m. Friday, at the church. Burial will follow in the Hill Crest Cemetery.

Online condolences may be shared with the family at

Austin & Barnes Funeral Home and Crematory in Boone, is serving the Burleson family.

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