Geneva Yarborough Kennedy
February 25, 2009
Geneva Yarborough Kennedy, 100, of Columbus, MS, died February 23, 2009, at Baptist Memorial Hospital in Columbus. Gunter & Peel Funeral Home has been entrusted with her funeral arrangements. Visitation will be at First United Methodist Church in the Fletcher Jones Building from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Thursday, February 26, 2009, with the funeral to follow at 2:00 p.m. with Rev. Ron McDougald, Chaplain of Trinity Place Retirement Community, and Dr. Sam Morris, Lead Pastor of First United Methodist Church, officiating. Burial will follow at Friendship Cemetery. Mrs. Kennedy was born in Birmingham, AL, on August 15, 1908, the daughter of Cleveland and Daisy Ella Deaver Yarborough. She married Joseph Harry Kennedy on March 7, 1932, and moved to Columbus in 1940. In 1944, Mrs. Kennedy became associated with T. E. Lott & Company as the private secretary to Mr. T. E. Lott, and remained with the firm for 55 years, retiring in 1999. In addition to her active professional life, Geneva was an avid and dedicated community volunteer. She was a member of the First United Methodist Church, where she served on the Administrative Board. She served as a long-time trustee of Methodist Senior Services of Mississippi. Mrs. Kennedy was a steering committee member, charter board member, and board member Emeritus of Trinity Place, where she later resided. She was an active member of the Pilot Club for over fifty years, a past president of the Wesleyan Service Guild, and the Emma Bell Bible Class, as well as a member of the Peyton Study Club, the Rose Garden Club, and the Daughters of the American Revolution. In 1987, Geneva was instrumental in the organization of the Keenagers, an older adult group, and served as president for several terms. She was awarded the Exchange Club’s prestigious Book of Golden Deeds Award, as well as the Distinguished Service Award, the highest state-wide honor bestowed by the United Methodist Services of Mississippi. In receiving one of her many honors, the following was said, “Geneva Kennedy is one who does good deeds in a quiet way without the backing of recognition of a group.” Another tribute said, “She is a positive person, always radiating a caring friendliness to everyone.” Geneva received her many accolades with humility, and considered the recognitions a challenge to redouble her efforts to serve her fellow citizens. Mrs. Kennedy was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, Harry, and her four siblings. She is survived by her son, Joseph Harry (Ken) Kennedy, Jr. (Nancy), granddaughter, Martha Claire Kennedy Fitzner (Arthur), and great-grandson, Thomas Kennedy Fitzner, all of Columbus, as well as two nieces and two nephews. Pallbearers will be Tom Buckley, James L. Cole, Mike Hawkins, Malcolm B. Howard, Rick Humphreys, Peter Koury, T. E. Lott, Jr., Dr. John E. Reed, Bob Reynolds and Si Thomas. Honorary Pallbearers will be Dr. Brad Brown, Charles Cole, Dewitt T. Hicks, Jr., Doug Holland, Dr. Ray Lacey, Billy McLeod, Oliver Phillips, Dr. Billy Pounds, John Sanders, Dr. James Woodard, Employees of T. E. Lott & Company, Employees of Trinity Personal Care and Board Members of Trinity Place Retirement Community. Memorials may be sent to First United Methodist Church, P. O. Box 32, Columbus, MS 39703, or Trinity Personal Care, 250 Airline Road, Columbus, MS 39702.