Send a Sympathy Card
Plant Memorial Trees
Friday, September 15, 2023
9:30 - 11:00am (Central time)
Friday, September 15, 2023
11:00am - 12:00pm (Central time)
Dena Gayle White Burleson entered this world on Jan. 7, 1949, at the small hospital in Picayune, MS. Her mother, Marietta Mitchell White had returned to her parent’s home to have the baby and her father, Hiram, made it to Picayune in time for the birth.
The family of three returned to their home in Silver Creek, MS. At the age of 5, her father accepted a job with Continental Trailway Bus Line and the family moved to Jackson, MS. They made their home in midtown and in 1956, Dena began her education at Poindexter Elementary School. In 1957, the White House moved to south Jackson because an addition to the family was expected. Dena continued school at Forest Hill Elementary and Marshall Elementary.
Junior High years were at Whitten Jr. High, where Dena was a member of the choir and newspaper staff. She attended high school at Provine High School, but her senior year she transferred to the newly built Wingfield High School. She was a member of the first graduating class of Wingfield, 1967. She then attended Hinds Jr. College and Mississippi State University where she earned the Bachelor of Science Degree in Elementary Education and graduated in 1971.
She and Sam married on June 26, 1971. The next two years she taught first grade at Hillcrest Christian School. In November of 1973, their daughter, Vonda was born and in August 1976, their son, Keith. Dena spent 5 years at home raising this family that God had so graciously given Sam and her.
When the children were of school age Dena returned to teaching. She taught sixth grade at Hillcrest Christian School until she retired from education in 1997. She and Sam moved to Pearl River County where they built their dream home. But, after the death of her family and Katrina, they returned to the Jackson area and built their home in Rankin County.
Dena returned to employment with Parker School Uniforms where she was assistant manager. She enjoyed her tenure there and said that not only did she get to see her former students all grown up but dress their children for school too.
In 2016, she retired again but after awhile at home she began another job at the Canton Convention and Tourism Office in Canton, MS. She once said that she had finally found the perfect job, where she could clean, organize, and entertain - the things that she had discovered she enjoyed most in this life.
Dena and Sam were married for 52 years. In those years not only were they blessed with their two children but also their daughter-in-law, Pam, and son-in-law, Jamey. The crowning jewels were their grandsons, Colby, and Ryan Burleson. They were always on her mind and in her prayers.
Dena’s dad, Hiram, after being saved himself, witnessed to Dena and in 1959, she and her father walked the aisle of Temple Baptist Church and surrendered their lives to Christ. They were also baptized together. A few years later, she walked the aisle again and believed that God wanted her to be a home missionary. She never followed through on being a missionary with the Southern Baptist Mission Board. She however taught Bible and witnessed to many children through the years at Hillcrest.
“Because I loved teaching so much, I Believe that this was the home mission field where God wanted me to be. I always strived to teach the gospel to the children, and I pray that it meant something to many of them.”
Dena Burleson went peacefully to her heavenly home on Tues. Sept. 12, 2023, with her family by her side. She is where she always wanted to be. She finally knows what the mansion that Jesus said He had for her looks like and she is walking the streets of gold. She wants us to celebrate that she is finally home with her Heavenly Father.
Visitation will be held on Fri. Sept. 15, 2023, from 9:30am-11am at Ott & Lee Funeral Home in Brandon, MS. Funeral Services are 11am on Fri. Sept. 15, 2023, at the Ott & Lee Funeral Home Chapel with burial to follow in the Crestview Memorial Gardens in Brandon, MS.