SMSgt (USAF - RET) James Richard Kirkland, 89, passed away February 18, 2021 at Tanner Medical Center, Carrollton, GA.
He leaves his wife of 65 years, Vera Helms Kirkland; his daughters, Janice Balte and Joy Park(Tom); his son, Richard Kirkland (Pam); two sisters, Beth Kirkland Youngblood and Kathleen Kirkland Hutto; 9 grandchildren; and 7 great grandchildren; many dear nieces and nephews; as well as many close friends.
James was proceeded in death by his parents, Estelle and Ivy Kirkland, his sons, Micky Kirkland and Richard Balte. He was also proceeded in death by 5 sisters and a brother; George Kirkland, Sybil Brooks, Ruth Harrell, Annie Riley, Jeanette Harlson and Betty Bright.
James was born July 9, 1931 and raised in Baker, FL. He graduated from Baker High School and then served 22 years in the US Air Force, which took him and his family all over the world. After retiring from the Air Force, James moved to Smyrna,Ga. and then Villa Rica, GA while working another 15 years for Sears as an auto mechanic.
During their retirement James and Vera fished their way around many lakes and enjoyed meeting many friends at various campsites throughout Florida and Georgia. They also enjoyed traveling with family and friends around the U.S. and Canada. Finally settling in Quincy, FL, James became a member of Antioch Baptist Church.
James had a great love of kidding around with family and friends, but especially his grandchildren. He also had a great passion for fishing and following various college and professional sports teams.
A visitation will be held on Sunday, February 21, 2021 at the Chapel of Whitehurst-Powell Funeral Home beginning at 1:00 p.m. A funeral service will follow visitation beginning at 2:00 p.m. Burial with military honors will be held at Shady Grove Cemetery. Donations may be made to the Wounded Warrior Family Support organization.
To send flowers to James' family, please visit our floral store.
Wounded Warrior Project Family Assistant