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FARMINGTON – Shirley Jeanette (Burgess) Wilkson, of Farmington, passed away peacefully on January 29, 2018, at the age of 82. She was born October 30, 1935, in Libertyville, Missouri, to the late Frank Joseph and Leanna (Barnes) Burgess. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband of 46 years, James E. (Jim) Wilkson in 2003; three sisters, Joann Burgess, Beverly LaBreyere, and Joyce Crossett and a brother, Joey Burgess.

Shirley attended Farmington High School and, later in life, Mineral Area College. She married Jim in 1957 and after living in several places in the early years of their marriage, settled in Farmington to raise their family. She worked as a teacher at Farmington Christian Academy and Head Start in Bonne Terre. A member of the First Freewill Baptist Church and a lifelong Christian, Shirley was a woman of strong faith who demonstrated her love for Christ through many loving words and deeds. She had a true servant’s heart and for many years had a monthly nursing home ministry. She enjoyed writing poetry for loved ones, traveling in the Rocky Mountain States, reading, annual road trips with her sisters, and spending time with her family. Family was of the utmost importance to Shirley. In life, and up to the moment of her passing, she was a woman of grace, courage and kindness.

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Survivors include her two children, Jan E. Wilkson of Farmington, and James D. (Jim) Wilkson, of Pinellas Park, Florida; sister, Sharon Garrett, sister, Linda Underwood and her husband Greg, a sister-in-law (like a sister) Janis Burgess; and numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and extended family.

Friends and family may call at Cozean Memorial Chapel on Thursday, February 1, 2018, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Funeral services will be Friday, February 2, 2018, at 10 a.m. in the Cozean Chapel with Brad LaBreyere officiating. Private interment will be held immediately following the funeral service at Parkview Cemetery in Farmington. Memorials, if desired, may be made to Samaritan’s Purse. View the tribute video and share your memories and condolences at

the life of: Shirley Jeanette (Burgess) Wilkson
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