Death – Randel H. Kirkland, Jr. Obituary

Death – Obituary

Hill Crest Memorial Funeral Home

Randel H. Kirkland, Jr.

Bossier City – Randel Henry Kirkland, Jr., longtime Bossier City resident, passed away at Willis Knighton Pierremont on January 12, 2022, at the age of 99.

Randel was survived by his daughter, Susan D. Kirkland and sons, Randel Henry Kirkland III and Mikal K. Reyer. He was predeceased by his beloved wife, Jacquelyn Gunn Kirkland who passed away in 2005.

Randel was born in Oak Grove, Louisiana on September 29, 1922, to Randel H. Kirkland, Sr. and his wife, Sally Kirkland.

Randel recognized early in life a career goal in education, which began with a boxing scholarship to Northwestern State University where he also played football four consecutive years. World War II interrupted his education and after being honorably discharged from the Navy, he completed his Master’s Degree at Stephen F. Austin University in Texas.

Randel began his teaching career at Bossier High School where he taught Civics and coached track and field and football. He proudly led his players to two Class “A” Louisiana State Championships. The “Golden Era” of Bossier High football came at the end of the 1940’s. The 1948 team, with Loy Camp as Head Coach and Randel as his assistant, won the State Championship. Many of the athletes coached by Kirkland were on his track and field team and won the Class “A” Louisiana State Championships in 1949, 1950 ad 1951. His four State Championships are the record and he is considered “The Dean of Bossier High Coaches” and was inducted in the Bossier High Hall of Fame.

He was chosen to become Principal at Plantation Park Elementary and was next to become the first Principal at newly opened T.O. Rusheon Junior High School, also in Bossier City. During his tenure as Principal at Rusheon, he hand selected a faculty that would grow student achievement levels beyond expectations.

His innate ability to identify and place talented teachers was recognized by his Superintendent who promoted Randel to supervising all elementary schools, grades K-9 for the rest of his long career, retiring in 1977.

Randel met his wife, Jacquelyn, on a double date that he joked later in life, “But we were on the opposite ends of that double date!” They married in 1948 and completed their family with Susan in 1953 and Randy in 1961.

Randel’s other passions were fishing Lake Bistineau and hunting the Tensas River Valley.

So many young people asked Randel the questions, “What was the secret to living such a fulfilling, long life?” His answer was always, “Make his day the best day of your life.” Something he practiced, not preached!

Services to honor Mr. Kirkland will be at 2:00 P.M., Monday, January 17, 2022, at Hill Crest Memorial Mausoleum Chapel. Visitation will begin at 12:00 P.M. within Hill Crest Memorial Funeral Home prior to the service.

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Posted online on January 14, 2022

Published in The Shreveport Times

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What Is An Obituary

In national newspapers an obituary (obit for short) is a news article that reports the recent death of a prominent person. Although it tends to focus on positive aspects of the subject’s life this is not always the case. According to Nigel Farndale, the Obituaries Editor of The Times: “Obits should be life affirming rather than gloomy, but they should also be opinionated, leaving the reader with a strong sense of whether the subject lived a good life or bad; whether they were right or wrong in the handling of their public affairs.”

In local newspapers, an obituary may be published for any local resident upon death. A necrology is a register or list of records of the deaths of people related to a particular organization, group or field, which may only contain the sparsest details, or small obituaries. Historical necrologies can be important sources of information.