Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Repose of Vernon Victor Kirby, Jr., M.D. born 3/31/1925 Richmond, VA 1925, died 7/4/2008 Denton, TX.

The message below was shared with me several days ago and I contacted Janet right away to express the regrets of myself and the PRA. Dr. Kirby is a Past President of the PRA and served on the Board for several years. His wife, Mary, was the Editor of the Pennington Pedigrees for many years and is a PRA Honorary Member.

I asked Janet if I could publish her message about her Dad's passing when I first received her message. She sent me more information and a couple of pictures but she wasn't clear about posting any obituary so I'm just posting what she originally sent and my message to her.

Gene Pennington (Group 7), Chairman and Research Director

Message dated 7/7/08:

My dear Pennington cousins, it is with much sadness that I tell you of the repose of my dear father, at the age of 83. He had a massive heart attack last week, but miraculously was able to stay alive for a few more days, which allowed him to tell us how much he loved us, and for us to tell him how much we loved him. We were even able to have a bedside service in ICU the day before he died, performed by Father Seraphim, even though Dad was not Eastern Orthodox. Denton Regional Medical Center's hospital Chaplain Terry Maze prayed at the bedside with us the morning of Dad's last day. Dad died peacefully July 4, as he held in his right hand a Holy icon of Christ.

Clement-Keel of Gainesville is providing funeral services at Rosston United Methodist Church, in Rosston, Texas at 10:00 a.m. Wednesday July 9. The cemetery is next to the church. Dad is a World War 2 veteran, so mom will ask the Air Force to send color guard, flag, and bugler. Gabrielle Bronzich music minister of St. Sava, will play the organ and harp.

Please pray for my dad's soul, and pray for me, for my mom, and for my family.

"Give eternal rest, in blessed falling-asleep, O Lord, to the soul of Thy servant Vernon, departed from this life; and make his memory to be eternal."

Much love,
Janet "Helen" Kirby

I sent the following message to Janet on 7/7/08:


I received a message from Nell Truitt letting me know that your father, Dr. Vern Kirby, passed away on July 4, 2008. On behalf of the Members of the Pennington Research Association, please accept our deepest condolences. Please tell Mary that our thoughts and prayers are with her and your family.

It's been several years since I've seen your parents but I remember them with fondness and respect. I believe I saw them last at the Pennington Research Association's Reunion/Meeting held in San Antonio in 2001. We have a web page at --> which has a link to pictures of the reunion and includes some pictures of your parents.

Your Dad was instrumental in getting me involved with the PRA Board of Directors and appointed me as the Research Director for the PRA in 1998. His vision and insight helped guide the PRA into the Internet world and thanks to his support, we implemented several policies and projects that have affected thousands of Pennington researchers throughout the world.

Your Dad and Mom are two of the people who are primarily responsible for getting me involved in the PRA and I'll forever be grateful.

I remember your Dad's wonderful, friendly and thoughtful manners and his great Texas accent.

He will be missed by all of us and he will be remembered as an important Member of the PRA.

If you have an obituary prepared please send it to me (when you have a minute) and I'll publish it on the PRA's website (with your consent of course). With your consent, I'll also post it on the PRA's mail list. With your consent, I'll also forward it to the PRA's Obituary Database Editor who will add it to our database and post it on our Obituary web page.

I'd be very pleased to post a memorial web page on the PRA's website if you would like to write an article about your Dad. When you have a moment, visit --> and click on any of the links to read other memorial articles submitted by others to help preserve the memory of their loved one or dear friend. These will give you some idea of what others have written.

Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

Gene Pennington (Group 7), Chairman and Research Director