Clinton David Burleson, 1930-2013

The Rev. Clinton David Burleson, 83, a United Methodist minister for six decades in Arkansas, passed away Saturday, Nov. 16, 2013, at Fox Ridge Assisted Living Center in North Little Rock.

Clint was born in Nashville, Ark., to C.H. Burleson and Martha Adams Burleson and raised in Gurdon, Ark. He was a graduate of Gurdon High School in 1948 and Hendrix College in 1952. He lettered for the Hendrix Warrior Football team, playing four years under Coach Ivan Grove. While at Hendrix, Clint met Shirley Simpson, the beginning of a union that was to last 59 years. Clint and Shirley moved to Dallas in 1953 where Clint attended Perkins School of Theology at SMU. Their first charge was the Rosser circuit, consisting of several small churches southeast of Dallas.

Clint served as senior pastor at several churches including St. Andrew UMC Arkadelphia, Wesley UMC Pine Bluff, Oak Forest UMC Little Rock, First UMC West Memphis, First UMC Camden, Lakewood UMC North Little Rock and First UMC Little Rock. He also served as the superintendent of the Paragould, Forrest City, Jonesboro and Little Rock Districts.

He was active in Methodism on all levels. His service to the church included membership on the boards of Hendrix College, Philander Smith College, Camp Aldersgate and Youth Home. While senior pastor at First UMC Little Rock, he was instrumental in the planning and construction of its Child Development Center. In 1970, he received an honorary doctorate from Hendrix College. He served as a delegate to Jurisdictional and General Conferences, and was a delegate to the World Methodist Conference in Denver, Colo., in 1971.

In retirement, Clint joined his family and became active in Lakewood UMC North Little Rock, where he continued his teachings and ministry in any way he could.

He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife, Shirley Simpson Burleson; a daughter, Lucy Horton; a sister, Carolyn Staggs; and a son-in-law, Richard Hall. Survivors include his brother, Joe Burleson of Little Rock; a daughter, Katie Hall of Union City, Tenn.; a son, David Burleson and his wife, Angela, of North Little Rock; a son-in-law, Terry Horton of North Little Rock; and grandchildren Amanda Addison and her husband, Brent; Stephanie Hall; Andrew Hall; Matthew Horton; Amber Horton; Lindsey Horton; Alyssa Burleson; Lexie Burleson; and Leah Burleson.

The family would like to thank those at Fox Ridge Assisted Living Center in North Little Rock who offered Shirley and Clint friendship and care over the past three years.

A memorial service was held Thursday, Nov. 21 at Lakewood UMC North Little Rock. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the First UMC Little Rock Child Development Center, 324 W 8th Street, Little Rock, AR 72201, or the Lakewood UMC Endowment Fund, 1922 Topf Road, North Little Rock, AR 72116.