W. Ray Kirland, Harrison
W. Ray Kirkland, age 76, peacefully went to be with his Lord and Savior Friday evening, January 11, 2013, at his home in Harrison surrounded by his wife, children, and grandchildren. He was born November 1, 1936, in Dyess, Arkansas, the son of Jack and Eddith (Wortham) Kirkland.
After serving 4 years as a medic in the U. S. Army, Ray married Jimmie Sue Flemmons June 2, 1963, in Wichita, Kansas. Ray began a career installing carpet that lasted 30 years in Wichita, Kansas and continued in Harrison, Arkansas, which he made his home in 1976. Ray and Jimmie Sue purchased the Ranch House Restaurant in 1989 and his “serve good food at a fair price” business approach made him a successful business owner. He always had plenty of advice from the “Table of Knowledge” coffee drinkers that helped him achieve his success until their retirement in 2007. When Ray wasn’t watching a good western on the tube you could find him tuning in to watch his beloved St. Louis Cardinals, either on TV or the radio.
Ray loved his grandchildren dearly. They were the pride and joy of his life. Over the years, he has watched his grandchildren participate in many activities even when he wasn’t feeling well. Ray looked forward every year going on “Family Vacation” and taking Ralph camping every moment he could.
Ray was preceded in death by his parents; a brother, Leon Kirkland; a sister, Opal (Kirkland) Holland; three brothers-in-law, Dee Hutcheson, Lavon Newsom, and Duff Holland; and a son-in-law, Brian Lee Hicks.
Ray is survived by his loving and devoted wife of 49½ years, Jimmie Sue Kirkland, of the home; his five children and their spouses, Barbie Kirkland of Harrison, Jim and Becky Kirkland of Harrison, Tracy and Larry Griffith of Harrison, Martha Hicks of Harrison and Mandy and Danny Howell of Harrison.
Ray is also survived by 13 grandchildren, for whom he had a nickname for each one; along with eleven great-grandchildren. Ray is also survived by 3 brothers; 2 sisters; several nieces and nephews, whom he loved dearly; and many dear friends.
Visitation is 5:00 to 7:00 PM, Tuesday, January 15, 2013, at Roller-Christeson Funeral Home.
Funeral service is 10:00 AM, Wednesday, January 16, 2013, at Roller-Christeson Funeral Home, with Rev. Eddie Reed officiating. Interment will be in Maple Leaf Cemetery.
Pallbearers are Larry Griffith, Danny Howell, John Paul Davis, Wally West, Lyle Smith and Phil Watts.
Honorary pallbearers are Bill Hawkins, Johnny Boyd, Ralph Wells, John A. Johnson, Eugene Curtis, Mark Jenkins, Russell Jenkins, Ranch House Coffee Drinkers and Arkansas State Policy Troop I Retired Troopers.
Memorials may be made to Legacy Hospice, 215 N. Chestnut, Harrison, AR 72601.
Online Guestbook: www.rollerfuneralhomes.com/harrison.