Eileen E. Burns of East Sandwich, a familiar presence at the Hoxie House for many years, died January 4 after going into cardiac arrest while driving on Route 6A in Sandwich. She was 82.
Born in Revere and raised in Malden, she was educated at Northeastern University.
She worked as a purchasing agent for Avco-Everett Research Laboratory.
Ms. Burns spent her retirement on Cape Cod and became head docent at the Hoxie House in Sandwich. She gave the tours for 16 years until the COVID-19 pandemic caused the museum to become closed to the public.
“You fall in love with the house; everybody gets attached to it,” she said of the docents during an interview for a September 2019 Enterprise article about the two historic museums—Dexter Grist Mill and the Hoxie House—in the heart of Sandwich Village. It was at her initiative that local glassblower Michael Magyar agreed to make limited edition sun catchers to raise funds for each museum.
Ms. Burns received a Leo Manning Award from the Sandwich Chamber of Commerce for being a town ambassador.
She had also participated with American Legion Post 188 as a volunteer at the annual lobster luncheon for seniors after Friends of Sandwich Seniors, the group that originated the feast, disbanded in 2001.
She leaves two sisters, Sharon DeSisto of Yarmouthport and Deanna Szymczak of Sagamore; two brothers, Stephen Dustin of Everett and Randall Dustin of Cape Coral, Florida; and many nieces and nephews and other extended family members.
She was preceded in death by her husband of 38 years, James R. Burns, who died in July 2003; as well as her sister Glennie Jones and brother John Dustin.
Visiting hours will be Thursday, January 13, from 3 to 7 PM at Nickerson-Bourne Funeral Home, 154 Route 6A in Sandwich.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be said on Friday, January 14, at noon at Corpus Christi Church, 326 Quaker Meetinghouse Road in East Sandwich.
Burial will follow at Massachusetts National Cemetery in Bourne.