Otis C. Burrus, 89, of Zionsville, died Tuesday, Dec. 17, 2013.
He was born to Raleigh O. Burrus and Carrie Obenchain Burrus on July 10, 1924, in Wheatfield. Otis graduated from Valparaiso High School in 1942 and received a BA in history from Valparaiso University in 1949. He received a Juris Doctor degree from the Valparaiso University School of Law in 1952. He married Ruth Kettring in 1948, and in 1952 they moved to Zionsville, where Otis started his law practice.
Otis joined the U.S. Army in 1943, and he served with General MacArthur's headquarters in the South Pacific during WW II. From 1950 to 1951, he served in the Korean War as Personnel Sgt. Major for the 10th Inf. Regiment.
Otis practiced law in Zionsville for 50 years in the firm he started and which continues today as Burrus and Sease LLP. In 1959, he was elected to the Indiana House of Representatives and was attorney for the Town of Zionsville for 20 years. He was also a longtime officer and director of Farmers State Bank in Zionsville, the Zionsville Building and Loan Association, and National City Bank of Boone County.
Otis was an active member of Zionsville Christian Church and served as deacon and on the board of elders. He was past president, life member and a Melvin Jones Fellow of the Zionsville Lions Club. He was a 50-year member of Zion Lodge F&AM 197, and a life member and judge advocate of Post 97, Zionsville American Legion. He was a life member of the Zionsville Historical Society and served as a director of the Valparaiso University School of Law Alumni Association. He was the first recipient of the Valparaiso University School of Law Alumni Service Award. Otis was also a member of the Indianapolis Bar Association and member and past president of the Boone County Bar Association.
Otis loved deep-sea fishing, taking more than 250 fishing trips to the Florida Keys, Mexico and Belize. He was an avid gardener, winning hundreds of awards from the Boone County and Indiana State fairs, and he judged 4-H garden projects for several years. Otis loved to travel, enjoyed woodworking and stamp collecting.