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Frank Burnside

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Frank Robinson Burnside, Sr.

Mayor of Newellton
In office
Succeeded by Edwin Preis

Born February 19, 1915
Franklin Plantation

in Newellton, Tensas Parish, Louisiana

Died c. October 31, 2018
(aged 103)
Political party Democrat
Spouse(s) Marguerite Smith Burnside
Occupation Cotton planter

United States Army Air Corps in World War II

Religion Newellton Union Church

Frank Robinson Burnside, Sr. (February 19, 1915 – October 2018), was an agricultural businessman from Newellton in northeastern Louisiana

Burnside was born on Franklin Plantation near Newellton to Wade Walker Burnside, Sr., and the former Hester Patton. As a child, he became interested in both agriculture and flight. He attended Kemper Military School in Booneville, Missouri, which closed in 2002. He enlisted in the United States Army Air Corps (the forerunner of the United States Air Force) after the attack on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, by the empire of Japan on December 7, 1941. He was the chief pilot for the 20th Air Force in India. He flew fifty-five missions over a route called "The Hump," a dangerous supply crossing of the Himalayas into China. On returning to the home front, he served as a captain charged with delivering military aircraft around the country with the Air Transport Command, 4th Ferrying Group. He was awarded the Air Medal and the Distinguished Flying Cross for his service abroad. In 2015, the People's Republic of China presented him with the "Flying Tiger Victory Medal".[1]

On his return to Newellton, Burnside owned and operated Newellton Elevator Company, Delta Gin Company, and Franklin Plantation, along with his father and twin brother, Ben Patton Burnside (1915-1991). He was also the chairman of the board of Tensas State Bank for more than two decades. From 1958 to 1966, Burnside, a Democrat, served two terms as the mayor of Newellton, a post his father had also filled from 1924 to 1940. In 1948, he established the Mississippi Chemical Corporation. He served on the board for thirty-five years. He was also instrumental in founding Great River Grain in 1970 and Farm and Livestock Credit in 1974. He was the long-term president of Panola Company, Ltd., a position previously also held by his father. He sat on the board of directors of Union Oil Mill. Maintaining his interest in aviation, Burnside piloted a Beechcraft airplane to explore North America from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean as well as the Canadian wilderness.[1]

Burnside died at the age of 103. He was survived by a daughter, Karen Burnside Barnett (born November 11, 1943) (husband Glenn) of New Orleans, and a son, Frank R. Burnside, Jr. (born February 28, 1949) (wife Jan) of Newellton, five grandchildren, and a half-brother, Dr. Wade W. Burnside, Jr. His wife of seventy-two years, the former Marguerite Smith (1913-2009), predeceased him. Burnside was also preceded in death by his parents and twin brother, and sister, Jane Burnside Earnest (1911-1973). Like his other family members, he was affiliated with the inter-denominational Newellton Union Church.[1]

Graveside services were held on the afternoon of November 2, 2018, at Legion Memorial Cemetery north of Newellton.[1]