Monday, July 30, 2007

Grammie Sophie

Sophie Wyka Burgess, 84, of Exeter, New Hampshire died at home from cancer on July 28th. A long-time resident of Exeter and of Warren, Maine, Mrs. Burgess was born in Brooklyn, New York, on October 24, 1922. She graduated from Brooklyn College with a BA in French.

Her husband, Arthur Burgess, predeceased her on October 23, 1982. She leaves behind their seven children and spouses, Arthur and Gail Burgess of Auburn, ME, Barbara and Sherwood Hilt of Union, ME, Mary and Yusef Akyuz of Sudbury, MA, John and Susan Burgess of Newport, ME, Paul Burgess and Polly Moutevelis-Burgess of Hampden, ME, George and Mary Burgess of Warren, ME, and Irene Burgess and Mark Denmon of Washington, IL, as well as twelve grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.

Mrs. Burgess worked as an aide in the library at Exeter Junior High School before her retirement. An avid proponent of social justice in all its dimensions, Sophie worked for the poor and needy throughout her life. In her later years, she was actively involved in the St. Vincent DePaul Society, the IRS Volunteer Income Tax Services, and her home parish of St. Michael’s in Exeter. Her participation in several marches against the School of the Americas at Ft. Benning, Georgia as well as working for church reform through Call to Action reflected her desire to make a difference.

She actively supported the Exeter Public Library with ongoing volunteer service. Her knitted hats and mittens adorned many children from St. Michael’s Parish as well as service agencies in other parts of the country.

A Mass celebrating her life will be held on August 2nd at St. Michael’s Roman Catholic Church on Front St. in Exeter, NH. In lieu of flowers, Sophie would like donations to be made to the St. Vincent DePaul Society, Michael House, 11 Linden St., Exeter, NH, 03833.

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