Cover photo for Dr. Retha  Mae  Kilpatrick's Obituary
Dr. Retha  Mae  Kilpatrick Profile Photo
1936 Dr. Retha 2022

Dr. Retha Mae Kilpatrick

February 4, 1936 — June 30, 2022

Dr. Retha Mae Hoover Kilpatrick, age 86, passed away, Thursday, June 30, 2022 while under the care of Four Seasons Hospice at Harris Regional Hospital. Born February 4, 1936 in Lamar MO, she was the daughter of the late Oliver and Laura (Perrin) Hoover.

Dr. Kilpatrick will be fondly remembered as a respected professor in the School of Business at Western Carolina University. She was especially dedicated to business education, helping to produce future educators. Teaching was not just her career, it was her calling. She always said, “You’ll never fully know your impact as a teacher, but on those rare occasions that you do, it makes the time of not knowing worth it.

She was the devoted wife of her two late husbands, Dr. Joel Fred Kilpatrick and William Gries whose companionship she cherished. She was also a devoted mother, grandmother, baby sister, and friend. Her family meant everything to her. Nothing gave her more joy than making summer trips to Fort Scott, KS, to visit her sisters, brothers, nieces, and nephews. She will be dearly missed by all who had the pleasure of knowing her, her kindness, and her generosity.

She is survived by her son Joel Kilpatrick and his wife Krissy of Lewis Center OH; daughter Jennifer Ogren and her husband Chad of Cary, NC; her sister Marie Marshall age 95 of Fort Scott, KS; her grandchildren Jessica, Jacob, Julie, and Lola along with over five generations of nieces and nephews around the country.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Dr. Retha Mae Kilpatrick, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Saturday, July 9, 2022

12:00 - 1:30 pm (Eastern time)

Appalachian Funeral Service

165 Skyland Dr, Sylva, NC 28779

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Graveside Service

Saturday, July 9, 2022

3:00 - 3:30 pm (Eastern time)

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