Katherine K. Futrell

Published 11:36 am Wednesday, March 27, 2019

COURTLAND — Katherine “Kitty” Kirkland Futrell, 95, passed away peacefully at her home on March 26, 2019, surrounded by her loving family.

She was born on June 7, 1923, in Southampton County, Virginia, the second child and only daughter of the late Robert E. and Pauline Fuller Kirkland.

Kitty was predeceased by her loving husband of 75 years, Milton T. Futrell; and by four brothers, Robert Kirkland Jr., Ollie W. “Mutt” Kirkland, William R. “Nuke” Kirkland and John “Johnny Buck” Kirkland.

Kitty was a 1940 graduate of Boykins High School, where she was president and salutatorian of her class.

Born into the Baptist faith, she was a member of Courtland Baptist Church since 1942.

Kitty will be remembered for her 30 years of work at Walter Cecil Rawls Library and for driving the first bookmobile in Southampton, Isle of Wight, Sussex and old Nansemond counties and the cities of Franklin and Suffolk. She was also instrumental in setting up library branches in those areas.

As a history buff with a particular interest in and emphasis on Southampton County, she amassed a sizable collection of historical material on the county. She enjoyed helping those who would seek her assistance with Southampton County history. A favorite pastime of hers was browsing in the records room at the county courthouse.

Kitty was a charter member of the Southampton County Historical Society, for which she served as treasurer, aide to the historian and a longtime member of the Board of Directors.

Kitty and Milton were caretakers of the historic Rochelle-Prince house in Courtland for many years, where Kitty served on the Restoration Committee and worked on many other projects for the Historical Society.

For the Courtland Baptist Church 160th anniversary celebration in 2005, Kitty pulled together the history display of the church, as well as a portrait display of pastors who had served the church since 1845.

Kitty was an avid reader and book lover all her life, and was author of “The Walter Cecil Rawls Library and Museum — The First 30 Years,” and co-author of “Still Sits the Little School House,” a book about early school houses in Southampton County.

Kitty and Milton enjoyed traveling to Europe where they visited the sites of World War II events and memorials. They would also travel to various locations around the United States to attend annual reunions of Milton’s World War II 39th Field Hospital platoon. In 2008, they hosted the reunion in Yorktown, Virginia.

Kitty is survived by two sons, Milton Thomas Futrell Jr. (Jane Hardy) of Courtland, Virginia, and Douglass Kirkland Futrell (Adlyn) of Dublin, Virginia; four grandchildren, Kathy F. Dunlow (George Collins Jr.) and Brian W. Futrell (Mandy) of Capron; Molly A. Futrell of New York City; and Alexandria N. Futrell of Dublin; six great-grandchildren, Christopher L. Clapp, Alexis L. Clapp, Christina G. Dunlow, Jacob T. Dunlow, James W. Futrell and Mason T. Futrell, all of Capron, and all dearly loved by their “Grandmama;” sister-in-law, Betty B. Kirkland of Boykins; numerous nieces and nephews; and special friend, Dr. William E. Dunstan of Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

The family wishes to thank the staff of the Hospice of Virginia, and to express special appreciation for the service of the dedicated caregivers in the home.

The service in her honor will be on Friday, March 29, at 11 a.m., in Courtland Baptist Church (old sanctuary), 22265 Main St., with burial to follow at Beechwood Cemetery in Boykins, Virginia.

Visitation is on Thursday, March 28, from 7 to 8:30 p.m., in Wright Funeral Home, 206 W. 4th Ave., Franklin, Virginia.

At other times, friends may visit the family at the home of Tommy and Jane Futrell, 23211 Shands Drive, Courtland.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Courtland Volunteer Fire Department or the Courtland Volunteer Rescue Squad.