Rader Funeral Home - Kilgore, TX

James Dwight Kennedy
August 9, 1924 - May 19, 2007
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Services for James D. Kennedy, 82, of Kilgore will be at 10 AM, Friday May 25 at St. Luke's United Methodist Church with Reverend Ernie Turney officiating. Mr. Kennedy died Saturday afternoon May 19, 2007 at his home in Kilgore with his wife and children beside him.

Mr. Kennedy was born at Smackover, Arkansas August 9, 1924 to Ola and Clay Kennedy. He was thankful that his parents moved to East Texas in 1932. He attended the New London School in the sixth grade in March 1937. He is a survivor of the New London School Explosion. The following year he attended Kilgore schools where he remained a student, was an athlete in football, basketball, and track and graduated in 1942. Upon graduation, he joined the U.S. Marine Corps in 1943 and was sent for active duty in the South Pacific.

He obtained a bachelors and masters degree in Education along with administration certification from Stephen F. Austin University. He was employed by the Kilgore Independent School District as a coach, teacher for eleven years, principal of Eastview Elementary eight years, Kilgore Heights Elementary twenty-five years and retired in 1985. One of his honors following retirement was being elected Man of the Year in 1985.

Mr. Kennedy was very active in his church, St. Luke's United Methodist, where he was a member for 55 years. He taught Sunday school for twelve years, served on official boards, member or chairman of several committees and an active participant in his Sunday school class McDavid/McKinley. For over 25 years his passion was planting and nurturing the flowers by Rnowles Chapel.

Mr. Kennedy married Yvonne Bennett of Henderson on June 14, 1952. They were married almost 55 happy years and they had three children and three wonderful grandchildren.

He is survived by his wife Yvonne, two sons and daughters-in-law, Dwight and Deborah of Ovilla Texas, Mike and Blanca of Fulshear, Texas, and one daughter, D'Ann Kennedy Sebaste, of Charlotte, North Carolina. His three grandchildren whom he loved dearly are Dixie Kay Kennedy, Ovilla, Texas, Michael James Kennedy, Fulshear, Texas and Danielle Yvonne Sebaste of Charlotte, North Carolina. He is survived by one sister-in-law Carolyn Kennedy and niece Cara Bell, both of Kilgore.

Mr. Kennedy proceeded in death by his parents and two brothers, Clay Kennedy Jr. and Bryce Kennedy.

Pallbearers will be Bill Wylie, Milton Hattaway, Don Hedrick, Billy Humphrey, Jay Bell, James
Alvin Hunter, Jerry Zahn, and Marshall Bennett.

The family will receive friends on Thursday, May 24th, from   6 pm to 8 pm at Rader Funeral Home of Kilgore. Memorials may be made to St. Luke's United Methodist Church memorial fund or the American Cancer Society.


James Dwight Kennedy
August 9, 1924 - May 19, 2007




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