Margaret R. Burley


ROME — Margaret Rose Burley, 89, passed away on June 12, 2022, at Rome Health surrounded by her loving family.

Margaret was born on October 14, 1932, in Rome to the late Karl and Leona (Leuenberger) Wilhelmsen. She attended Rome Free Academy where she graduated two years early due to academic excellence. On December 5, 1953, Margaret married Clarence C. Burley Sr. and together they shared six children. Margaret worked at Griffiss Air Force Base, Rite Aid Warehouse and on various local farms throughout the years. She was an active member of every community in which she resided. An accomplished and passionate artist, Margaret exhibited and sold many of her paintings at local galleries and art shows. She was an avid reader, one of the things she was best known for, sometimes reading a new book start-to-finish in a day. She shared her love of reading with treasured friends in her Fiction Lovers book group for many years. As a lifetime nature admirer, Margaret would go hiking daily at Delta Lake State Park, where she could often be found even before sunrise. She loved bird watching and photographing wildlife on her trails. She would frequently stop along the way to sketch images of plants, flowers and animals that she observed while hiking. She was a past member of the Tramp and Trail Club, and previously attended the Unitarian Universalist Church in Utica, NY. Notably, she had an incredible and clever sense of humor. She was always prepared with a well-timed, quick-witted joke and loved a good political comic.

Margaret is survived by her children, Elaine Mororui (Stan Borek), Barbara McCauley (David), Clarence Burley (Colleen), Carolyn Michik (David), Sarah Finley, and stepson Kenneth Burley (Barb), all of Rome; grandchildren, Brian Burley (Michelle), Shaun Patrick (Sherry), Melanie Patrick, Andrew Michik, Eileen Michik (Aarron), Elizabeth Finley (Zack), and Danielle Scott (Christopher); several great-grandchildren, including Matthew (Brittany), Lily, Shaun, Adeline, Arizona, Lincoln, Riley, Greyson, and Alexandra; and two great-great-grandchildren, Karter and Dominick. Margaret also leaves behind her brother, John Wilhelmsen (Shirley); former son-in-law, Mike Finley; close family friend, Donald Budlong Jr.; and many nieces and nephews, including Julie and Janice, with whom she shared a special relationship. She will be missed by beloved family dog, Sadie, with whom she spent many of her final years spoiling with love and treats. Margaret was predeceased by husband, Clarence C. Burley Sr.; son, Roger Burley; sister, Karla Hallum; granddaughter, Kara Mororui, grandson, Michael Burley; and son-in-law, Robert Michik.

In keeping with Margaret’s wishes, there will be no calling hours. Immediate family will be gathering privately at Delta Lake State Park where Margaret enjoyed spending so much of her time. If you wish to donate in honor of Margaret’s memory, the family has requested that you contribute to the following cause that she held so dear to her heart: Great Swamp Conservancy,

Arrangements have been entrusted to Mills Funeral Home, Boonville. For an online message of sympathy please go to