Robert “Bob” Burleson

Published 8:54 am Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Robert “Bob” Burleson, 81, of Roan Mountain, passed away peacefully at his home on Saturday, October 3, 2015. He was a son of the late Robert Aaron and Virginia Shell Burleson and was born in Avery County, N.C., although he lived his entire life in Roan Mountain. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his beloved son, Todd Burleson; a sister, Bobbie McKinney; two brothers, Eddie Burleson and Jim Burleson; and a nephew, Bill Burleson.
Mr. Burleson was a 1952 graduate of Cloudland High School, a 1954 graduate of Lees-McCrae College and was a veteran of the United States Army. His career as a business/owner operator spanned 45 years and included Bob’s Dairyland in Roan Mountain and O’Dellys in Elizabethton. In addition to being a successful businessman, he was a member of the Tennessee Restaurant Association, the National Restaurant Association and was named Tennessee Restaurateur of the Year in 1996.
Mr. Burleson was also an elected member of the Tennessee State House and Senate, from 1972-1986. He was a member of the Roan Mountain Masonic Lodge #566 F&AM, the Jericho Shrine Temple, and the Gideons International. He was a lifetime member of Magill Memorial Presbyterian Church, where he served as an elder and Sunday school teacher.
He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Gail Pritchard Burleson, of the home; a daughter, Scarlett Anderson and her husband, Rik, Roan Mountain; two sons, Victor Burleson and his wife, Nicole, Charleston, S.C., and Julian Burleson, Roan Mountain; a brother, Tom Burleson, Colfax, N.C.; nine grandchildren, Emmi Burleson, Megyn Jefferson and her husband, Sam, Sophi Burleson, Hobie Burleson, Alden Anderson, Baylor Anderson, Cayden Anderson, Anthony Robertson and Tiffany Stiles; and three great-granddaughters. Several nieces and nephews also survive.
The family will receive friends from 4 to 7 p.m. Thursday, October 8, at the Rhododendron Chapel of Tetrick Funeral Home, Roan Mountain, or at the home at anytime. The family invites you to a Celebration of Life service for Mr. Burleson at 11 a.m. Friday, October 9, at Magill Memorial Presbyterian Church in Roan Mountain with Dr. Rev. H. Martin Christian officiating. Music will be under the direction of Tom Burleson, soloist, and Charlotte Smith, organist and soloist. Tom Burleson will also speak. Interment will follow in the Big Oak Tree Cemetery with music provided by Jon Shell, bagpiper. Active pallbearers will be Alden Anderson, Baylor Anderson, Rik Anderson, Aaron Burleson, Matthew McKinney, Martin Tipton and Ryan Tipton. Honorary pallbearers will be R.A. Burleson, Ted Tipton, Dave Holtsclaw, Junior Stanley, Floyd Storie, Jimmy Smith, Randall Hughes, Steve Boone and Gary Tipton. Those who prefer memorials in lieu of flowers may make donations to Magill Memorial Presbyterian Church Children’s Program, 296 Highway 143, Roan Mountain, TN 37687. Online condolences may be shared with the family at our website,
Tetrick Funeral Home, Roan Mountain, is serving the Burleson family. Obituary Line: (423) 543-4917. Office: (423) 772-3928.

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