John Aaron Burks Sr.

VanHornesville-John Aaron Burks Sr. age 52 formerly of 2406 State Highway # 80, was called home to the Lord from the Cleveland Clinic, on Monday, October 1, 2001 with his devoted wife, Karen and daughter Jana at his side after a courageous battle with end stage heart and kidney disease.

He was born on April 2, 1949 in Belglade, FL to John Will and Lois Iona Boykins Burks. When he was two weeks old the family moved to Jordanville, NY. John remained a lifelong resident of Herkimer County. He attended the VanHornesville School and graduated from Herkimer High School in 1967.

John embraced the entrepreneurial spirit of the American dream and spent most of his life self employed, starting many businesses: J.A. Burks Packing Company, Burks' Associates, JKA Sales, Inc., AJK International, Inc., Burks' Sportswear, UIC International, Inc., United Credit Association, Inc., Arab-American Business Funding Corp., International Proposal Services, Inc., Aaron Consulting, Burks' Firewood, Coordinated Properties Inc., National Legal Research and Document Center, Delta Partner Properties, Inc., Independent Research Associates, Inc. and Equity Press Inc.

Next to his family, however, the law was his passion and he spent twenty years as an independent paralegal, first starting with the National Legal Research and Document Center and then the Independent Research Associates. John received his law degree from the Southland University. He sat for and passed the Professional Responsibility portion of the New York State Bar Exam in November 2000. Hospitalizations precluded him from sitting for the remainder of the New York State Bar Exam first in February 2001 and then in July 2001, as he had planned.

Always remaining hopeful and optimistic about the future, on August 17, 2001, John married his best friend and love, the former Karen Kasold in the Heart Transplant Unit at Albany Medical Center, where he was awaiting heart and kidney transplants.

John is survived by his devoted wife, Karen and daughter, Jana; seven children from his previous marriage to Grace Merrick:, Dr. April Burks of Schenectady, Kim Burks of Rochester, John Burks Jr. of Tampa, FL Reginal Burks and his wife Christine of Germany, Faith Burks of Virginia Beach,VA, and Victoria Burks of VanHornesville; two step-children: Billy Cartier of Buffalo and Erica Cartier of Hadley, five grandchildren: James Washington of VanHornesville, Lanaie and Lanair of Rochester, Devon Burks of Germany and Raekwon Willis Burks of Herkimer and his mother-in-law Janet Kasold of Gansevoort.

He is furthered survived by his sister and Brother-in-law Iona and Johnny Jenkins of Somerset, NJ, sister Earledean Burks of Cleveland, OH, sister and brother-in-law Maureen and Robert Coles of Bronx, brother and sister-in-law Jerome and Pat Burks of Rochester, sister Mary Hales of Buffalo, brother and sister-in-law Evon and Teresa Burks of Frederick, MD, brother and Sister-in-law Delmonte and Philman Burks of Alvarado, TX, brother and sister-in-law Freeman and Blandine Burks of Rochester, brother and sister-in-law Eral and Diane Burks of Cleveland Heights, OH, sister and brother-in-law Lisa and George Burrows of Canada brother and sister-in-law Zack and Donna Burks of Jordanville, two sister-in-laws Mae Burks of Worcester, MA, Ann Burks of Rochester, brother-in-law and sister-in-law Michael and Brandy O'Neil Kasold of Abbington, PA, sister-in-law and brother-in-law Patrice and Kenneth Hicks of Ganesvoort, numerous aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews. John was predeceased by his parents, John and Lois, a sister Elaine. Two brothers, Oscar Neil and Willie Arthur and his father-in-law, Raymond Kasold.

John enjoyed conversation, walks, bicycling, movies and family outings. John would most like to be remembered for his faith in God and his love for his family. He was deeply loved and will be sorely missed but will be remembered always.

Funeral service will be on Saturday at 10:00 AM in J. Seaton McGrath Funeral Home, 40 West James Street, Richfield Springs. The Reverend John Roos will officiate. Interment will follow in Highland Rural Cemetery, Jordanville. Calling hours on Friday 1:00 to 4:00 and 7:00 to 9:00 PM.