Donna L. Burtch

Donna L. Burtch

Donna L. Burtch passed on September 18th, 2018. Born Donna Llewelyn Eggleston on June 24th 1945, she was the fifth of seven children of Roy Dean and Capitola Eggleston. Her six siblings, Phillip, David, Thomas, Ike, Nancy and Teddy have all passed.

Donna is survived by her three children Amy June Phillips, Cory Jon Smith and James Leif Smith. She had three grandchildren by Amy: Gregory Ryan, Cory James and Cody Danial Phillips. And another grandchild, Harmony Ida Smith, by James and his wife Dimple.

Words cannot express how much she loved and prayed for each.

The funeral will be held at St. Michael’s Catholic cemetery at Antwerp, N.Y. on Saturday, October 13, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. There will be a Memorial Dinner held at the American Legion in Antwerp afterwards. The company of those who knew and loved her, food, daisies, and flowers are all welcome.

We thought it apropos to take this moment to commemorate her life in the words of those who knew and loved her most: ____________________________

Her Daughter…


Into this life she was thrown; lost and confused, even after fully grown; Too often scared of weary times unknown; FEAR NOT MAMA!…for I have been shown; the endless FIELDS OF FLOWERS that your love has sown; So, in death, You Are Not Alone; Only released from this Earthly home; Forever able to kneel by HIS throne!!!

-Amy ____________________________

Her oldest son:

“Mom would tell me how as a child she and her brother Ike would stare at the stars and jest that they were, at least in part, from another world. She said she always felt a little out of place. I think that’s why, wherever she went, she made her spot in the world a special space.

She loved classic country music, playing cards, daisies, Mysteries, Downton Abbey, gardening, the outdoors, animals of all kinds, sewing, decorating, and could kick anyone’s butt in a mean game of scrabble. However, aside from friends and family, what she lived for and loved the most was helping others.

Regardless of race, status or religion her home was a sanctuary to anyone in need. Children with down on their luck parents, or someone who just needed some time to get their life together. Countless faces over the years.

Her life was spent helping others and putting her own needs last. She did it out of love and compassion with no expectations of anything in return. She always regretted not aspiring to a higher level of education, but I can’t think of a higher calling or greater achievement than the way she dedicated her life.

Those who didn’t know her well may have thought her hard at times, but that was only because in private she was very sensitive. She was very demanding, but it was always selfless. She would chase you with a broom to motivate you and always pushed for the best of a person. She never expected more than she was willing to do herself.

She had an uncanny ability to read a person’s true nature and was always honest to a fault – even when being honest hurt her own self interests. When I was younger that caused problems. We all whitewash the world we see. But as I aged my appreciation for her grew.

She was my mother. She was also my greatest teacher. I learned more from her than any other. I just wish I had learned more about her. I told her many times how much I loved her. I will always regret not telling her how much I respected and admired her. I pray she knew.

She was scared in her final days. She had undiagnosed leukemia for two years and passed the day after we got the diagnoses. But she passed like she lived – bravely, smiling, joking and giving me orders.

She jested she was a starchild, like her and her brother dreamt in their youth, and was returning home. When you look at the stars at night think of my mother. I know I will.

I love you mom, Cory ____________________________

Her Youngest Son…

“My mom was always keeping busy with craft related projects and encouraging us to be creative. One year for Christmas when we didn’t have too much. I remember making tinfoil ornaments and popcorn garland for the Christmas tree. Despite poking my finger with the needle countless times, this was one of my fondest moments with my mom. She wasn’t your typical mother and for that I will miss her immensely. My mom knew how to make you feel special.”

-Leif ____________________________


I start crying, then I question Faith…Part of my heart died with her. She set the pace from the starting line to the end of the race. A resting place, hard times or better days, let us pray, it’s our time to separate, let the stars shine on heaven’s gate. My thoughts are with you and I will always miss you. I wanna kiss you. Seems so artificial fake to me, basically, I’m having a crazy dream, but I am not asleep…GOD DAMMIT JESUS….I can”t even eat!!! Please Watch Over Me, Go In Peace, Your Soul Is Free! I will Always Love You!

Please Lord, hear my last cries; I lean forward looking at black skies; I see the storm as it passes by; And I ask Him Why!; It just keeps pouring these sad good-byes; Was Jesus born, just to be sacrificed; Or does it mean more for the average guy before they have to die; or do I act surprised… And who keeps score in the afterlife….

My Grandmother was soldier strong. The last of 8; she wanted this. Now, she is in a better place, no more pain!!! I will always love you and never forget you. You gave me the half that made me the whole.

Sleep Easy…I’ll never forget you!!!

-Gregory ____________________________


For as far back as I can recall;

There are memories of you that will always craw; You are one who always taught me never to take “no” or “I can’t” as an answer; To face my fears. But in recent years and with a heavy heart; I’ve been forced to face one of my biggest from the start… The loss of you!; Although you are gone, you will never be forgotten; I will always cherish the late nights we would just sit up talking; Now it’s time for you to rest and sleep; and from this day I will not weep; for you still live in my memories deep.

Love, C.J. ____________________________


You were a beautiful grandmother and a God-fearing woman who was always there for me through my trials and tribulations. Not only did you provide my needs you covered my wants. I will forever love you. Until the day we we meet again, Rest in paradise my glorious grandmother.

Love you always, CODY





I am a sinner like everyone else in this Fallen World. I thank you that Jesus paid for my sins on the cross and rose to defeat sin and death. Now, I can have a relationship with you. Please forgive me and cleanse me for my sins, come into my life and take control of it and help me follow Jesus as my Lord, day by day, from this moment on, in Jesus name I pray!


Source: Watertown Daily Times Obituaries
Donna L. Burtch