Gustave Joseph Burtscher Jr., 84, of Newcomerstown (Salem Township), passed away suddenly at his residence on Thursday morning, March 4, 2010.

Gustave was born in Uhrichsville on June 30, 1925, a son of the late Gustave Joseph and Myrtle Gray Burtscher Sr.

He served in the Army in Germany with the 49th Armored Infantry Battalion during World War II, earning a Purple Heart and a Bronze Battle Star. He returned to Tuscarawas County following the war and together with his brother, Robert, became the owner and operator of the Burtscher Brothers Concrete Company, Dover, specializing in cement finishing and contracting for over 30 years before his retirement in 1990. Prior to that, he was employed at Marsh Industries, Dover, for a few years.

Gustave was a member of the Darrell Beiter Post No. 3303, Newcomerstown Veterans of Foreign War, the Thomas Montgomery Post No. 431, Newcomerstown American Legion, the Mohawk Post No. 2040 and Coshocton VFW. He was also a former member of the LOOM Lodge No. 1337, Newcomerstown Moose. Gustave was also a member of St. Francis DeSales Catholic Church, Newcomerstown. He enjoyed spending time with his grandchildren, watching sports on television, especially his favorite Fighting Irish of Notre Dame football team, reading, attending yard sales, and hunting with his many dogs.

In addition to his parents, Gustave was preceded in death by brothers, Robert Burtscher of New Philadelphia and James Burtscher of Dover; and brother-in-law, Robert Huff of Canton.

Gustave is survived by his wife of 49 years, Florence V. Demuth Burtscher, Newcomerstown, whom he married Nov. 18, 1961.

He also leaves three sons and four daughters, Milo Clyde (Martha) Kincaid of Newcomerstown, G. Joseph (Diana Davies) Burtscher III of Port Washington, Jeff L. (Billie Jo Walkup) Burtscher of Newcomerstown, Shirley M. (Leon B.) Gibson of Raeford, N.C., Donna S. ("Rusty") Henry of Dennison, Ginny K. (Thomas D.) Richardson of Tuscarawas and Beverly J. (Roger) Oyer of Kensington; 15 grandchildren; eight great-grandchildren; brothers., John (Teresa) Burtscher and Walter (Barbara) Burtscher, all of Dover; sisters, Joann (Richard) Burson of Zanesville and Jeannie Huff of Canton; sister-in-law, Elizabeth Burtscher of New Philadelphia; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Funeral services to celebrate Gustave's life will be Monday, March 8 at 1 p.m. at the Ourant Funeral Home, Newcomerstown. The Rev. Garry Marlatt will officiate. Burial will follow in the Salem-Union Cemetery, Port Washington, where the Newcomerstown Veterans Honor Guard will perform military graveside services.

The family is suggesting that memorials be made in Gustave's honor to an individual's favorite charity.