Peggy Lorene Simmons Burnett, 87, passed away on July 8, 2019 at Ashford Assisted Living in Draper, Utah.
She was preceded in death by her sister Sally Bowman, son Russell Nichols, and husbands Keith Kerr and Lamar C Burnett. Surviving children are Linda (Steven) Kushner and Gary (Barbara) Kerr. Surviving step-children are: Terilyn (McKay) Hendrix, Donita (Scott) Rowley, Michael (Debbie) Burnett, Ted (Rochelle) Burnett, Jan (Trello) Prince, Cindy (Jed) Shumway, Jeri Adams, Jami (Brian) Champagne, and Mark (Stephanie) Burnett.
Peggy was born in Gaffney, South Carolina on August 9, 1931 to James H Simmons and Eunice Lorene Brannon. She lived in North and South Carolina and in Akron, Ohio until 1956. In college, she was an Art, English, and Psychology major.
Peggy had a brilliant mind and memory. Throughout her life, she recorded many facts, events and experiences and shared them with others. She was known for her love of reading, especially historical books.
In addition to teaching school, Peggy worked with her husband, Keith Kerr, as a lay marriage and family counselor for nearly 30 years. She was the first woman to be ordained as a Youth Minister in the United Church of Christ.
In 1986, while living again in South Carolina, Peggy and her husband joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Membership in the true church changed their lives and brought a happiness not previously known. Peggy served in both the Primary and Relief Society Presidencies, sang in the choir, and served 8 years as a Stake Missionary.
Around the time Peggy’s husband Keith died, one of her good friends from Santa Maria, California lost his wife. With both of their mates gone, Peggy & Lamar Burnett married in 1997 and were sealed in the Salt Lake Temple in August 1999. With the marriage, Peggy’s family greatly expanded; she was blessed with 11 more children, over 60 grandchildren, and many great-grandchildren. Right from the start, Peggy made great effort to blend their families.
Initially, Peggy and Lamar settled in St. George. They enjoyed hiking in the mountains, visiting bodies of water, and hunting for rocks. They explored just about everything around them. As they traveled around, they loved to visit family and attend Art museums and galleries. They also served a 2-year mission in the St. George Temple before they moved to Orem in 2005.
In Orem, Peggy and Lamar had a wonderful garden with plenty of produce to share with family and friends. They both served at the Seville Retirement Home where they made numerous new friends and lightened many hearts.
Peggy was a talented artist and her love of art was manifest in so many ways. She was a master builder of miniatures and made well over one hundred! Most of them are found in the Orem Heritage Museum at SCERA. Peggy was also an avid photographer and was able to capture the most beautiful scenery and landscapes from all around the United States. In her later years, she enjoyed coloring detailed pictures and shared that love with her friends at Seville.
Visits with family and doing her family history were always priorities in Peggy’s life. Whether she lived in California, North or South Carolina, St. George, or Orem, she was always clipping obituaries, writing histories, planning reunions, or just visiting and helping families come together. This was her passion.
Among Peggy’s many gifts were her enduring love and kindness towards others. She was always so positive and you could count on her to cheer you on in whatever you were doing. She is loved by so many family members and friends.
Peggy had a strong testimony. She loved the Lord with all her heart, and was grateful for His influence in her life.
The family wishes to express gratitude to the Seville, Summerfield, and Ashford Assisted Living facilities for the care they provided to Peggy since the passing of Lamar. Also, heartfelt thanks to Sundberg-Olpin Funeral home. A Graveside service will be held Friday, July 12, 2019 at 11:00am at Timpanogos Memorial Gardens Cemetery, 1000 400 East, Orem, UT, 84097.
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