Bruce Edward Burris

Bruce Edward Burris

September 21, 1952 - April 28, 2018
Laguna Niguel CA

Bruce Edward Burris

September 21, 1952 - April 28, 2018
Laguna Niguel CA


Bruce Edward Burris, 65, died on April 28, 2018, surrounded by family, after a challenging illness. He will be remembered as a fun-loving, intelligent thinker with a gentle spirit.

Bruce was born to N. Jack and Alwilna (“Willie”) Burris in Lawrence, KS on September 21, 1952 where he was raised in the city of Lawrence with his elder sister, Shirley Burris Henson. He grew up an avid sports fan, reading Sports Illustrated magazine cover-to-cover since its first issue when he was 12 years old. He was particularly fond of the most popular basketball team in town” the Jayhawks of the University of Kansas.

He attended the University of Kansas and earned a Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering in 1974. While in school, he met and married his wife, Debra (“Debbie”) Lee (Duling) Burris in 1973. Both civil engineers, they worked in Kansas City for a brief time before moving to California for graduate school. Bruce and Debbie graduated from Stanford University with Master’s degrees in Environmental Engineering in 1977. They moved to Orange County, California where Bruce lived for the next 41 years, working as a consulting engineer on a wide variety of projects to manage wastewater and create clean drinking water. Bruce and Debbie had two children, David John and Erin Michelle Burris.

Although a Jayhawk at heart, Bruce followed the Stanford Cardinal and immediately took to the local Southern California sports teams, warm weather, beaches, and active outdoor lifestyle. Bruce loved classic rock music, animals, hiking, camping, golfing, and fishing. He enjoyed hiking Saddleback Mountain and Mount Whitney. He fished anywhere he could” in streams and lakes, beach shores and the deep sea. A late bloomer in the kitchen, Bruce learned to cook making a wide variety of fish recipes from his latest catch. He spent his free time refereeing youth soccer games, attending Anaheim Ducks hockey and Anaheim Angels baseball games, and following his Jayhawks through March Madness.

He is survived by his wife, Debbie, and his two children, David and Erin. He is also survived by his sister, Shirley, her husband, Doug Henson, and their children, Sarah and Alex Henson, and their families. He will be greatly missed.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations in memory of Bruce be sent to:
ALS Association –
The Association for Frontotemporal Degeneration –


Memorial Service

  • Date & Time: June 24, 2018 (1:30 PM)
  • Venue: Dana Point Yacht Club
  • Location: 24399 Dana Drive Dana Point, CA 92629 - (Get Directions)

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11 responses to Bruce Edward Burris

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  1. My deepest condolences to The Burris family and friends for the loss of your loved one Bruce. In God’s word the Bible is a wonderful promise for the loved ones we have lost in death to be fulfilled very soon right here on a brand new Paradise Earth by his son Jesus Christ it will give you hope and comfort during this difficult time Acts 24:15; John 5: 28,29; Revelation 21: 1-5.

  2. Brice was such an awesome uncle. When you guys all came down to Kansas, I remember having so much fun. Especially the time when it was raining and all 3 dads went outside with umbrellas to light fireworks for us all watching through the windows in grandpa and grandma’s house. It was also so much fun coming to see you guys in California. I remember going to Disney and he sat on a roller coaster with me that time and listening to him scream was so much fun. He and all of you, Debra, David, and Erin are in my prayers. While it is no easy thing to lose a father, especially such a loving one, I am so glad his suffering is over. It was a struggle for all of you I know. I am glad to know he is now in heaven above fishing with my dad. Call me if you want to talk. And Erin, I know this was such a hard thing to get through writing, but you did the most amazing job. It is such a tribute to him and I know he is proud.

  3. Robert lombard

  4. May you soar on the wings of Eagles Bruce embracing the Lord’s merciful grave & love!

  5. Sending our thoughts and prayers during this difficult time. Bruce will surely be missed.

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