Orris Burns III

STANDISH — Orris Edward Burns III, born January 18, 1947, died unexpectedly of a heart attack at his home in Standish, May 6.

Edd was born in Camden.

Edd was always a hard worker, even earning a trip to Italy as a Young Columbus paper carrier for the Portland Press Herald.  He graduated with honors from Camden High School in 1965 and went on to the University of Illinois.

In 1967, he left the university to join the US Navy as a Cryptologic Technician and had advanced to the title of Lt. Commander by the time he retired in July 1988. His naval career took him to Japan, Spain, Guam, California, Texas, Virginia and Florida.

He worked as a software engineer for SAIC until 1993 when he went to work for TECHSOFT as the chief engineer.  He also worked for fun at the University of West Florida as an online teacher. He returned to Maine in 2012 and worked at a variety of jobs including Cashstar, the Maine Department of Vital Statistics and Emdeon as a database engineer.   He often worked beyond retirement as a volunteer tech consultant for his sons and granddaughter in their careers.

Edd had a keen mind and a lifelong love of knowledge. He earned several degrees including Master of Science, Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science and Master of Software Engineering.  He also earned several certificates in various specialties.  He was an Eagle Scout with the Boy Scouts of America and remained in scouting as an Assistant Scoutmaster and Scoutmaster.  He was a Young Columbus XII and enjoyed basketball, track and debating.

He was an avid reader and loved to travel.  He and Lea recently travelled to Germany with their good friends, the Andersons and the Moodys.  He volunteered his time at the Northern Light Mercy Hospital Patient and Family Partnership Council for Quality and Safety, and as a Commissioner for the Pine Tree State Scout Council.

Edd was impressive, but was humbly unaware of it; he left a positive impact on many lives.  He cared more for others than he did for himself.  He protected against bullies, loved babies, endured snowstorms, enjoyed softball games (bundled up in warm clothing while everyone else was dressed in shorts and t-shirts – he really did hate being cold).

He was a favorite book buddy, a marigold who loved carving pumpkins.  Watching Jeopardy was not a passive activity; it was a nightly competition.  Bald Rock Mountain was one of his favorite places and he dared to carve names into fixtures there.  He was always available to listen and point you in the right direction, all the while refraining from pushing his own opinion on you.  He empowered others with his advice and wisdom.  He loved sharing his knowledge and was always available to help anyone who asked.

He was an intelligent, kind, quiet, gentle, man who knew what was most important in life – family.  He loved us for who we are, not what others wanted us to be.  He always sent gifts.  He loved his family and took great delight in keeping up with his many far-flung loved ones via Facebook.

Edd was predeceased by his parents Orris Edward Burns Jr. and Doris Angie (Nickerson) Burns.

He is survived by the love of his life Lea Estes Sutton, of Standish, with whom he was joined via a commitment ceremony Feb. 14, 2019; son Orris “Eddie” Burns IV and his wife Christina, of Purcellville, Va.; son Christopher “Chris” Burns and his wife Leigha, of Alameda, Calif.; grandchildren Macey, Madison, Peyton, Leon, Kyle and Audrey; great-grandchildren Aubree and Easton; sister Roberta “Bobbi” Burns of Palmetto, Fla.; sister Jean Kerski and her husband Don of Newington, Conn.; brother John Burns and his wife Deborah of Buxton; step-children Jill Sutton and her husband Mike Simmons; Joanna Sutton and her partner Anna Atkins; step-grandchildren Kayla, Marco, Tiana, Tanner, Jayden and Aubrey; and many nieces, nephews and grandnieces/nephews all of whom loved him dearly.

A celebration of life will be scheduled at a later date, to be held at the Portland Friends (Quaker) Meeting where Edd attended for the past several years.