John Robert Burt was born March 13, 1951 and died from a heart attack on October 3, 2021.
Rob was born at Fort Bliss in El Paso Texas to Wanda and Richard “Dick” Burt , who was career military. The family moved on to Okinawa Japan, Edward AFB in California, Kindley AFB in Bermuda and lastly, Maxwell AFB in Montgomery Alabama. Upon retiring from the military the family moved to Portland Oregon to be near Wandas family, who had settled in the area.
At 18 years old Rob followed the family tradition of military service by joining the Marines. He served 2 tours of duty in Vietnam and was discharged in his early 20’s. He seldom spoke of his experiences with being the radio man on the long patrols in the jungle or the violent capturing and holding of some strategic hilltop. Still, the memories were never far away. Rob was a proud Marine until his last breath.
Rob was preceded in death by his parents and brother Michael. He is survived by his siblings Jim Burt, Steffanie Maloney, Rhonda Smith, “Bitty” Bartrum and Don Burt. He enjoyed his 13 nephews and nieces.
Rob is survived by his children and stepson: Christen Hattan, Jacob Burt and Jeffrey Downey. He leaves behind 8 grandchildren: Michael Bass, Taylor King, Brandon ”Danny” Menary, Hayden DeVore, Ethan Burt, Westen Burt, Joshua Eberly and Madison Downey. He shared camping trips, fun quad rides and long weekends with the kids. Life brought opportunity for him to form a special bond with Joshua and Madison.
Rob retired from the Port of Portland Marine Security division in 2013, spending about 20 years keeping Americans safe from terrorists (his humor). He enjoyed watching the river wildlife and feeding the critters. He had fun with his coworkers and warm friendships were formed. I missed not hearing the port stories when he retired.
Rob had a passion for airplanes. He left a single passenger almost finished kit plane in the garage, kept company with an ultra light plane and powered parachute. This guy clearly wanted off the ground. His other passion was POLITICS. He said that he had shown his love for me by marrying a Democrat. He loved the mountains, forests, high desert, hunting and camping, tequila shots, “the property”, quad rides and always a good campfire.
This is what we will remember most about John Robert Burt. He was Fun! He made us laugh! Rob had funny stories that none of us got tired of hearing. And that was a good thing because he tended to repeat a few favorites.
He has left us heartbroken. He left us unprepared to live without him. He has left us with memories that find us smiling.
If you asked Rob how it’s going right now, he would reply…groovy!