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Author Topic: Gene Burkland passed away  (Read 10746 times)
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Howard
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« Reply #30 on: December 09, 2009, 09:53:44 PM »

Gene was not only a fierce and creative competitor but was a good man to his family and friends. A true ambassador to the sport.
Godspeed Gene.
Howard
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Bobby c
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« Reply #31 on: December 10, 2009, 12:58:30 AM »

Our sincerest condolences to Betty and Tom.
You are in our prayers.
The Collier family.
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neatoldstuff
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« Reply #32 on: December 10, 2009, 01:10:09 AM »

 We  wish Betty and Tom, and the entire Burkland family our deepest sym-
pathy and condolences  Our thoughts and prayers are with Gene as he roars his way to heaven, spraying salt higher than man can see..our prayers are also with your loved ones as we all grieve the passing of a great man.  Terry and Dawn Seaholm
Tacoma, Wa.
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michael lueders
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« Reply #33 on: December 10, 2009, 12:59:16 PM »

Thoughts and prayers to the entire Burkland family...God Speed Gene.
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Larry C
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« Reply #34 on: December 10, 2009, 01:07:17 PM »

Been traveling and just read the news, God Speed Gene and condolences to the Burkland Family.
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Seldom Seen Slim
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« Reply #35 on: December 10, 2009, 01:12:01 PM »

I've just posted an obituary for Gene Burkland.  It comes to us from the Great Falls (Montana) Tribune, to whom I give thanks and credit for it.  It's on the home page of the site -- but I'll put it here, too, since many Forum members don't go to the home page.


"Cremation has taken place under the direction of Croxford Funeral Home and Crematory. His memorial service is 2 p.m. Sunday at First United Methodist Church.
Gene left us on Dec. 8, 2009. We expect he's gone racing with his departed friends, or is beginning another great project.
Gene was born in Great Falls on Nov. 1, 1936, to Carl and Phyllis Burkland.
His brother Jack died in 2004, and his sister Bonnie Flanagan lives in Missoula. In 1959, he married Betty Hunter. They have two sons; Tom and his wife Linda and daughter Carly from Ogden, Utah, and Bill and his wife Barb and sons Nick and John from Clancy. Gene grew up in Great Falls, and graduated from Great Falls High School in 1954.
Gene began his career with the Montana Air National Guard in 1956 and worked there for nearly 30 years, welding everything from titanium aircraft parts to tricycles and red wagons. When he retired, he moved into race car production and welding/repair work at his home shop. His love affair with cars began in 1951, when he bought his first car for $7.50. After investing in a $10 piston, he was ready to roll!
During the 1960s, his was a familiar face at drag races across Montana, first with a 1932 Ford roadster, and then with a dragster. Classics Car Club, custom show cars, stock cars and dragsters grew into a Bonneville land speed racer produced and run with the assistance of hundreds of friends. In 1971, he took his home-built Studebaker and many friends to Bonneville for the annual Speed Week. He set a national record in 1978 at 255 mph, becoming the first Montanan in the exclusive Bonneville 200 MPH Club. His next car put his son Tom into the 200 MPH Club. Since 1986, Gene, Betty and Tom have been building and racing their streamliner. They set a National Speed Record in October 2004 at 417 mph and a World Speed Record in September of 2008 at 416 mph.
Gene's life revolved around the love of his family and the friends he accumulated through his skill and creativity in welding, his love of cars and curiosity about everything. He was a magnet who drew people to his garage and he had that stubborn streak needed to see an idea through to the end.
He began battling his lung disease in earnest in 1997. We're glad he's finally breathing easy, but we'll miss his ever-present smile.
In lieu of flowers, please bring or send your favorite picture of you and Gene to Croxford Funeral Home, 1307 Central Ave. Great Falls, MT 59401.
Donations can be made to "Save the Salt" c/o Russ Eyres, 3673 Millikin Ave., San Diego, CA 92122.
Condolences may be posted online at www.croxfordfuneralhome.com and/or www.gftribune.com/obituaries."
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Jon E. Wennerberg
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« Reply #36 on: December 10, 2009, 05:09:24 PM »

Goodbye. Good memories. Good man!
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« Reply #37 on: December 10, 2009, 06:34:05 PM »

Gene was the best...a smiling, gentle, designer and builder and everyone's friend. He built three record setting Bonneville cars that are still capable of raising the bar. It was sad to hear this news, a true friend for many years...I will miss him.

From the early 1980s, Betty and I butted heads as competitors for a few years then the Datsun became Dan Webster's comp coupe. Gene's Stude was given a new home with Ron & Gail Tesinsky and the construction began on the Streamliner. It took years for the conditions to allow their goal to be accomplished. Gene's health continued to deteriorate for the last several years, but he did share the victory with Betty and Tom. What a blessing the family have been in my life. They are examples for all of us. 
 


* Three Salt Vets3.JPG (22.78 KB, 400x300 - viewed 255 times.)
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« Reply #38 on: December 11, 2009, 10:41:33 PM »

Gene, Tom and Betty always made me feel welcome in their pit and on the race course even when it fell to me to make the tough calls. Professional, warm, talented, innovative, I could go on and on. I have learned so much from them not only in the technical application of the art and science of LSR but also how to become comfortable with all that is the family that is LSR. Tom continues to mentor all that seek his consul and in that vein the sport has lost one of its brightest guiding lights in Gene. Gene will be missed more that I can express in words…… God Speed….
Lee Kennedy, Technical Chairman, SCTA-BNI
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Stainless1
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« Reply #39 on: December 12, 2009, 08:55:16 PM »

God Speed Gene....
While you are gone, our memories of you will live forever.  I'm sure by now you have hooked up with Nolan, Don and Bob, and the 4 or you are coaching the others with advice on setting up a chassis for God's LSR challenge.  You will be missed.
My condolences to Betty, Tom and the family.... our LSR family has lost another legend.
« Last Edit: December 12, 2009, 09:16:02 PM by Stainless1 » Logged

Stainless
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MSA Bockscar Lakester #1000 my fastest mile 245 and change, 84 ci turbobusa motor... but Corey's 233 MPH H/BFL record is still 3MPH faster than mine.
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« Reply #40 on: December 13, 2009, 02:08:27 AM »


 Let us all strive to carry on the class and dedication that he has shown. Vio con dios Gene.
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« Reply #41 on: December 13, 2009, 06:46:12 AM »

Nice article on Speed TV web site

http://auto-racing.speedtv.com/article/lsr-bonneville-hero-gene-burkland-passes-away/

Thanks for the inspiration Gene.
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« Reply #42 on: December 17, 2009, 05:50:18 PM »

From Hemmings
http://www.hemmings.com/newsletter/newsletter.html?volume=5&issue=28&id=2599&refer=news&emlid=172944#2599

Street Rods and Hot Rods
Land-speed icon Gene Burkland dies
Not many men have built cars capable of 400-plus MPH, and the world is now shorter one of those men.

Gene Burkland, famed land-speed racer, died last Tuesday of lung disease at the age of 73.

Based in Montana, Burkland first made his way to Bonneville in 1971 with his 1953 Studebaker coupe, and with that same car first entered the 200 MPH Club in 1978 with a record-setting run of 255.863 MPH. A 247 MPH Datsun came along in the 1980s, when his son Tom and wife Betty began their racing careers. Then, in 1986, Gene began construction of the Burkland Streamliner, a completely custom car built with the 400 MPH goal in mind.

Though he began battling lung disease in 1997, he, Tom and Betty were able to not only set the one-way record for a piston-drive car at 438.815 MPH in 2000, they were also able to set a national (two-way) speed record at 417 MPH in 2004 and the international Class 11 speed record at 416 MPH last year.
- By Daniel Strohl

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Stainless
Red Hat 228.039, 2001, 65ci, MSA Bockscar Lakester with a little N20 
MSA Bockscar Lakester #1000 my fastest mile 245 and change, 84 ci turbobusa motor... but Corey's 233 MPH H/BFL record is still 3MPH faster than mine.
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