Wednesday, February 20, 2013
THE GRANDCHILDREN OF CECIL KILGORE by Johnny Kilgore
“Grandchildren are the crown of the aged, and the glory of children is their fathers.” Proverbs 17: 6 ESV
I am one of the thirty grandchildren of Sarah and Virge Kilgore, the matriarch and patriarch of our family. Granny Kilgore knew all her 30 grandchildren, but Papa Kilgore died even before some of his grandchildren were born. Papa Kilgore never did live to know that his grandchildren became preachers, teachers, educators, laborers, secretaries, business men and women, some holding doctoral degrees, executives, musicians, homemakers, and the greatest profession of all—fathers and mothers. Yet, the influence that Papa and Granny Kilgore had on our lives cannot be underestimated. It is through their children, our parents, that we became who we are. We bear the name of "Kilgore" proudly, but at the same time with humility.
My Daddy, Cecil Kilgore lived a long and productive ninety-one years. Unlike his father, my daddy was fortunate to see all his nine grandchildren grow up into productive adults. Daddy got to see all his grandchildren go to college with eight of them having undergraduate degrees and one having a doctorate. Though Cecil Kilgore’s grandchildren are still young, and though there are many wonderful experienced ahead for each of them, the direction for their lives has already been forged to some extent. Some of daddy’s grandchildren are teachers in elementary educations. One is a college professor. There are others who are creative in graphic design and photography, web design, and in music both in composition, performance, audio engineering and production. Four of the grandchildren are married, and Daddy got to know their spouses, as well as his six great grandchildren.
Life will continue to bring changes in the lives of the grandchildren. There will be more marriages, children born, professional job changes, promotions, new places to live—all of which my Daddy will not get to know. When you think of life from that point of view, an emotional sadness comes over me as though there is a void, or something missing. The truth of the matter, it is “someone” who is missing. Such is life, and the cycle of life as "God gives and God takes away". There is never a conclusion or finish—only an unfolding of our lives into chapters, as a never-ending story. I am grateful that our heavenly Father is the author of that story. It is He who has blessed us with both our parents and our children. Grandparents and grandchildren are extra bonuses through God's blessing. To Him we give all the glory.
It is extremely rare when all the Cecil Kilgore grandchildren get together at one time. In fact, the last time this happened was at Daddy’s funeral. I now show you a photograph of them taken then. They are a handsome and beautiful bunch of young men and women.
To identify each grandchild, from left to right, they are:
JOHN (MAC) McCoy Kilgore, LEE (BETH) Elizabeth Kilgore,
JENNY Rebecca Smith, JEREMY Ryan Allen,
KELLY Lennee’ Kilgore Treadwell, Michael SHANE Kilgore, James RYLAN Kilgore,
HOLLY Bess Kilgore Prince, and KATIE Jordan Kilgore.
Daddy was always proud of his grandchildren, as every grandparent should be. He also had concern for their lives-- what they were doing, where they were living, if they were well, if they had enough money…. At the same time, he allowed them to be themselves, and never spoke of them in an unsupportive way. He loved them. His presence is greatly missed, but his influence lives on in their lives through us.