Neal Lewis Burkholder

31 January , 192430 January , 2019

It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of Neal Lewis Burkholder on Wednesday, January 30, 2019, one day short of his 95th birthday. Neal was born in Lusk, Wyoming on January 31, 1924 to Luvena Elizabeth and Lewis Clyde Burkholder and was the youngest of twelve children, with the oldest being twenty. Though the Burkholder family was large and did not have much, there was plenty of love to go around, with much laughter and many card games.

Neal, being the youngest, remembered plenty of activity with his older siblings and was very lonely when they all went off to school for the day. He lived in Lusk, Worland and Laramie, Wyoming. He also lived for a time in Fresno California where he developed his gardening skills. He graduated from the University of Wyoming with a Bachelor of Science degree in Geology.

His early career as a geologist took him to various states, he worked in Oklahoma and Alaska before being transferred to Calgary by Union Oil. There he met the lovely Sybil Totten and they were married in Calgary on October 1, 1952. Two children were born of this union, Candace and Brian and what lucky children they were!

He had a long and industrious career as a geologist in the oil and gas industry and he retired in 1986. Neal and Sybil moved to Spokane, Washington in retirement where he enjoyed the shorter winters, lots of golf, gardening, walking his devoted dog Pepper and caring for his family. Neal was a man of few words and his quiet, consistent, loving demeanor kept us all grounded, he was the anchor of the family. He was a truly devoted husband, father and grandfather, his love knew no bounds. To say he will be missed would be a mild statement, may the fragrance of his being with us linger until we too, pass from this earth.

The family would like to send a heart felt thank you to the staff, doctors, nurses and care providers at the Bow Crest Care Center for their loving care of both Neal and Sybil. They were especially focused on Dad after he lost his beloved wife and partner early last year.

Neal was predeceased by his loving wife Sybil, March 14, 2018 and is survived by his son, Brian Burkholder; his daughter, Candace (Kevin) Thomas; as well as his grandchildren, Meghan (Jeff), Reilly, Raegan and Quaid.


  • Memorial Service Tuesday, 5 February , 2019

Neal Lewis Burkholder

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