Mrs. Linda Earlene Norman Wilkinson, 79, of Valdese, passed away on Wednesday, May 10, 2023, at UNC-BR Morganton, following a period of declining health.

Linda was born on June 3, 1943, in Lincoln County to the late William Earl Norman and Isabell Sullivan Norman. She was a longtime member of the First United Methodist Church of Valdese and retired after 30 years of teaching with Burke County Public Schools. She was heavily involved with her church over the years, enjoyed watching baseball, growing flowers and spending time with her family.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her stepfather, Belton Beal, and seven siblings.

Survivors include her beloved husband of almost 60 years, Samuel Wilkinson of the home, two daughters, Kelly W. Tyson and husband Douglas of Drexel, and Linda Katherine “Kathy” Watts and husband James of Drexel.  Also surviving are four grandchildren; Danielle Tyson, Samuel “Sammy” Tyson and fiancé Britney Parton, Nicholas Jaquins and wife Althea, and Rachel Branch, four siblings; Dale Norman, Jane Chronister, Carole Carter and husband James, Jeff Beal and wife Lou, and Beth Roseboro and husband Nelson, sister in-law, Mary Ellen Reid and brother-in-law, Ben Cozort.

Funeral services will be held on Saturday, May 13, 2023, at 3:00 P.M. at the First United Methodist Church of Valdese with Rev. Jim King officiating.  Interment will follow at Burke Memorial Park.

The family will receive friends on Friday, from 6:00 until 8:00 P.M. at Heritage Funeral Service in Valdese, and again briefly on Saturday, from 2:30-3:00 P.M. at the First United Methodist Church of Valdese in the parlor.

Memorials may be sent to St. Jude Children’s Hospital at, or to the Paralyzed Veterans of America, P.O. Box 758589, Topeka, KS 66675-8589.

An online guestbook and obituary are available at

Heritage Funeral Service & Crematory of Valdese is serving the Wilkinson family.