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Kirby, W. Luther

October 29, 1898 - February 3, 1981

Man is here for such a short time and is remembered by the mark he leaves in this world. The following tribute was read at Luther Kirby's funeral by Rev. Sam Truett on February 5, 1981. It is a fitting tribute for a good neighbor, beloved husband, father and grandfather. Such was the person of W. Luther Kirby.

"Blessed is the wife of such a man, for he will love his wife as Christ loved the Church.

Blessed are the children of such a man, for he seeks to teach his children not only to live in this world, but live above it.

Blessed are the grandchildren of such a man, for he leaves them an honorable heritage, and an example they will do well to follow.

Blessed is the minister who preaches to such a man, for his love for God's word, and appreciation for God's workman make that minister a better preacher.

Blessed are the friends and neighbors of such a man, for he lives by the Golden Rule, and loves his neighbor as himself.

Blessed are they who are called upon to minister in such a man's funeral, for theirs is an honor undeserved, and a privilege long to be remembered."

W. Luther Kirby was born to W. Thompson and Mattie Frances Kirby in Beulah Township of Johnston County, North Carolina. He married his beloved wife, Mattie Leigh Phillips on December 21, 1920 at the age of 22. They were happily married for 60 years and from their union were born six daughters: Marcedes Oliver, Annie Mae Medlin, Edith Hansley, Merle Kirby, Bobbie Holland and Jackie Flowers.

Mr. Kirby spent his entire life on the farm. In 1927, he purchased the family farm where he lived until his death at the age of 82. He loved farming and his main interest was the golden leaf, tobacco. He was associated with the Banner Warehouse in Wilson and served as night manager for many years. He, also, was a dealer for Smith Douglas Fertilizer for 30 years.

Throughout his entire life, Mr. Kirby was well known in Johnston County. He was instrumental in organizing the Johnston County Farm Bureau and served as secretary. He won several awards including: N.C. Food and Feed for Family Living from Governor Broughton in 1941 and in 1954 an award from the U.S. Department of Agriculture in recognition of eight years of service with agriculture stabilization and conservation.

Mr. Kirby was devoted to his family, his community and his Church. He was a member of the Kenly Free Will Baptist Church for 66 years and secretary-treasurer of the Sunday school for 15 years.

W. Luther Kirby always made time for people because throughout his life, people were his main interest. Mr. Kirby made his mark in this world.

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