Tributes for

Burnett, Wilma Borchard

Burnett, Wilma Borchard passed away on August 24, 2013. Wilma was born in Oxnard, CA on May 6, 1920 to Anna and Antone Borchard, pioneers of Orange County. Wilma grew up very happily on her family farm in Santa Ana with her sisters Bernice, Frances, and Anita and her brother, Vincent. Their family home and grounds were donated to the Catholic Church and are now the site of the Heart of Jesus Retreat Center and a convent for the Sisters of the Society Devoted to the Sacred Heart. Wilma was proud that she drove herself and Anita to St. Joseph Catholic School every day starting at the age of eleven. Wilma graduated from Tustin High School and from Immaculate Heart College in 1942. Wilma started her career as an elementary school teacher in the Central Valley of California teaching all subjects including hygiene and nutrition to migrant farm workers’ children. Wilma loved her career and she had the opportunity to teach on American army bases in Japan, Hawaii and Germany. Wilma also loved traveling. She spent her summers all over the world. Later in her career, Wilma became a reading specialist. Many of her former students kept in touch with her for years.

In 1968, Wilma married Alex Burnett, a widower with four children. Wilma retired from the Long Beach School District and began her new career as wife and mother devoting herself wholeheartedly to her new family. Wilma joined La Purisima Catholic Church in Orange, where her youngest daughters attended school, becoming active in the Altar Society and the bowling league. Wilma was a devout Catholic who gave her time and resources generously to Catholic Charities, Santa Margarita High School, St. Joseph’s Hospital, Children’s Hospital of Orange County, Holy Family Catholic Church and numerous other charities. Most recently, Wilma generously donated the funds for the new library at Mater Dei High School. In her later years, Wilma enjoyed time with her grandchildren, traveling with her husband and doing charitable works. She also took great pleasure in travelling and visiting with her nephews, Tom, Bob, John, and Pat Heffernan and their families.

Wilma is preceded in death by her parents, her husband, her sisters Bernice Heffernan and Frances Borchard and her brother, Vincent Borchard. She is survived by her sister, Anita Merten, her daughters Barbara (Bart) Brock, Elizabeth (Walter) Holloman, Vicky (Mike) Larson and her son, Michael (Loretta) Burnett, nine grandchildren and numerous nephews and nieces. Wilma’s sense of humor, her energy, generosity and love will be greatly missed by all who loved her. A celebration of Wilma’s life will be held on Wednesday morning, August 28, 2013. The Rosary will be recited at 9:30 and the Funeral Mass will follow at 10:00. Both will be held at the Heart of Jesus Retreat Center Chapel located at 2927 S. Greenville St., Santa Ana 92704. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Heart of Jesus Retreat Center.


Mortuary: Brown Colonial Mortuary

Florist: Aladdin Florist