A proud pioneer of the telecommunications industry and a lifetime resident of the Plymouth area, Floyd E. Burkett, 95, who lived for the past 71 years at 612 E. LaPorte St., Plymouth, has died. In failing health for the past two years, Floyd died at 11 a.m. on Sunday, July 8, 2001, in Millers Merry Manor, Plymouth, where he had been a resident for just over a year. Born in Culver, Ind., the son of George and Pearl Wolfe Burkett, on April 21, 1906, Floyd attended grammar school in Burr Oak and was a member of the West High School class of 1924. On June 28, 1930, in Plymouth, he married his high school sweetheart, Mary I. Welborn, his bride of 71 years. Floyd was considered to be an authority on the history of northern Indiana telephones by everyone in the business. He could fix anything. He said he started at the bottom of the business. As a “squeak” or groundsman, he dug postholes and set poles by hand. His first job was to string a line of eight copper wires from Warsaw to Knox. Floyd started moving up; climbing the poles as a linesman and cable splicer. During World War II, Floyd was in a profession vital to the welfare of the country and was exempt from service. United Telephone went to war. They handled, among other things, the Western Union. Floyd was District Manager and Traffic Engineer for United Telephone for 42 years, retiring in 1969. He has always kept busy, doing his own yard work and, with the neighbor’s help, took care of the snow until just a few years ago. He enjoyed deer hunting in Montana and traveling to Canada each year for fishing trips until his age of 92. He taught each of his great-grandchildren how to fish. The Burketts spent many winters in Texas and then Florida. Floyd had a great interest in his family and his church. A lifetime member of the Church of the Brethren, most of his years at the Plymouth church, where he was a former trustee and member of the Loyal Builder’s Class. A past president of the Plymouth Lion’s Club, he was a life member and past president of the Independent Telephone Pioneers and a life member of the National Association of Independent Telephone Pioneers. He was also a life member of the Marshall County Historical Society and for twenty years, a Plymouth Fire Department volunteer. Floyd is survived by his devoted wife, Mary, and by their two daughters and their families: Joyce E. and Frank Howard, Plymouth and children: Debbie Caudell, Springville, Ind., and Susan Wendel, Plymouth. Daughter Carol A. Magoon-Blane, her husband Mark of Indianapolis, Ind. and her children: Julie Desaulniers, Manitoulin Island, Canada, Bonnie Helton, Indianapolis, Maggie Magoon, Athens, Ohio, Ryan Magoon, and Andrew Magoon, Vancouver, British Columbia. Eleven great-grandchildren also survive along with a sister, Rachel Wenino, Plymouth. Floyd was preceded in death by his a brother, Clarence Burkett. Friends may visit with the family to celebrate the life of Floyd Burkett on Tuesday, July 10, 2001, from 4 to 8 p.m., in the Johnson-Danielson Funeral Home, 1100 N. Michigan St., Plymouth. Visitation will be continued for one hour prior to the service at the Plymouth Church of the Brethren, 1130 N. Michigan St., on Wednesday, July 11, 2001, at 11 a.m. The Rev. Dave Kerkove, pastor of the church, will officiate. Burial will be in New Oakhill Cemetery, Plymouth. Memorial gifts in Floyd’s memory may be made to the church or to a charity of the donor’s choice.