Floral 06

Elise Blair “Tootie” Burke

May 7, 1943 ~ May 31, 2022 (age 79)


Elise Blair “Tootie” Burke, left this earth on May 31, 2022, but will live on forever in our hearts.

A native of Gibsonville, NC she was born in Guilford County and was 79 years old.

Tootie is survived by a sister, Barbara Abbie Martin, nephew Eddie Brown, Nieces Mendi Brown and Elise Brown Kennedy (Ben.) Great step nephew Dillon Brightwell, Great Nieces Claire and Samantha Kennedy.

She was preceded in death by her grandparents J.W. and P.T. Burke, and Cylis Dalton and Katherine Albright Story.  She was also preceded in death by her parents Edward Mendenhall and Elise Story Burke, sister Etta Brown, brothers-in-law James Brown and Jim Martin and her beloved poodle Pepper Ann.

After graduating from Gibsonville High school, she attended Louisburg and Elon colleges.  She graduated from Southeastern School of Beauty in Charlotte NC.  She owned and operated Service Beauty Salon in Gibsonville for many years.

She retired from Show Tags a wholesale sporting goods company in Greensboro where she served as office manager and IT specialist. Toddler Tootie received her unusual nickname from her family because she was inseparable from her copy of the Golden Book Tootles.  That book is a story about a train that goes off track to pick daisies and learns that to get anywhere it must stick to the tracks.  To know Tootie was to know she lived that book.  She could be very directed when need be but enjoyed her whimsical frolics. She loved her four-legged friends and she treated them like family.

She had a green thumb and loved gardening, with one notable exception. She led a lifelong yet unsuccessful campaign against the existence of green peas.  She refused to eat or grow them.
She never met a stranger and her friendships were long and loyal. She could always be counted on to pack her large porcelain bowl to the top with delicious sausage balls and take them along to gatherings with friends. She will be remembered for being the quietest person in the room with the most influence and could do the impossible by doing things her way. (Oh, Tootles) She was a lifelong member of Gibsonville Methodist Church, she served as a board member at Residential Treatment Center for many years and was the recipient of the member of the year award in 2011.  She was a charter board member of the Historical Society of Gibsonville, Business and Professional Women and a member of the Friend O’Rose Garden Club

The family would like to thank Toni Fellows and Ruby Atkins, plus all the Hospice members that helped her during this difficult journey.

Also, the family extends their gratitude to the numerous friends who stood by Tootie's side and helped her these past few years. You were a blessing to her and to us.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to Gibsonville United Methodist Church, or Hospice of Alamance County.

There will be a memorial service on Saturday, June 11. Visitation will be at 11:00 and the service will be at 12:00 with the Rev. Dr. Barry Lemons presiding.

To plant a beautiful memorial tree in memory of Elise Blair “Tootie” Burke, please visit our Tree Store.

Memorial Tree
A Memorial Tree was planted for Elise

We are deeply sorry for your loss - the staff at Rich & Thompson Funeral & Cremation Service

Join in honoring their life - plant a memorial tree


June 11, 2022

12:00 PM
Gibsonville United Methodist Church
501 Church Street
Gibsonville, NC 27249

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