Kenneth Keenum, Sr.


Kenneth Gene Keenum, Sr., age 77 of Murphy, NC passed away Friday, Oct. 28, 2011 at Murphy Medical Center.

He was a native of Gaston County, NC; son of the late Ralph and Addie Parker Keenum. Kenneth attended North Carolina State, Oklahoma State University and the Naval Academy.  He was a veterinarian in Murphy from 1966 to 1972 and also for six years prior to that in South Dakota. In 1972 he became the assistant director at the State Lab in Raleigh and retired in 1995 from the Animal Disease Diagnostic Lab under the NC Department of Agriculture.

He enjoyed farming in his retirement and playing bridge in his earlier years in South Dakota and Murphy. Kenneth was a member in the Mason Lodge in South Dakota and JCs in various places, member of the Lions Club and assisted with the veterans. He loved people and meeting their needs. Kenneth was a member of the First United Methodist Church of Murphy.

He is survived by his wife, Clara Ruth Fullbright Keenum; one son, Kenneth Keenum, Jr. of Murphy; two daughters, Lisa Keenum of Murphy and Joyce Jackson of Winston-Salem, NC; two sisters, Geraldine James and husband, Duke of Waynesville, NC and Carolyn Lonnblad of Glendale, AZ; one granddaughter, Lianne Olivia Jackson McCray and husband, Rase of Roanoke, VA.

Funeral services were held at 1 p.m., Monday, Oct. 31, 2011 at the Friendship Baptist Church in Murphy. Rev. Aud Brown officiated. Burial was in the church cemetery. The family received friends from 12 to 1 p.m., Monday, Oct. 31, 2011 at the church.

In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to the Hattie Parker Cemetery Flower Fund at Friendship Baptist Church Cemetery Fund, c/o T.L. McNabb, 186 Friendship Church Road, Murphy, NC.

You may send tributes to the Keenum family at

Townson-Rose Funeral Home is in charge of all arrangements.

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