John Richard Kitchen

John passed away from complications due to COVID-19 on December 14, 2020. He was 86 years old. He was a loving son, husband, father, brother, grandfather, and a friend to many.

He is preceded in death by his mother Ruby Evelyn Kitchen, his father Oliver Frank Kitchen, Sr., his brother Robert Delano Kitchen and his daughter Deborah Kitchen Early.

He is survived by his wife of 47 years, Josephine (Jo Anna) Kitchen, his son Ricky Kitchen (Judy), his daughter Barbara Corum and his brother Oliver Frank Kitchen, Jr. (June), several stepchildren including Matthew Tortorici (Linda) and Beth Hawkins Jackson (Ric), many grandchildren, and great grandchildren.

While he leaves behind a legacy of a strong work ethic and great love and devotion for his family, he should also be remembered for his great love and walk with the LORD which came later in life.

Instead of a funeral service, his wishes were to have a celebration of his life with family and friends, but at a later date when the world is a safer place.

We can all take comfort knowing he is at rest and peace living his best eternal life.


  1. Matt and Linda Tortorici on December 19, 2020 at 11:08 am

    You will be greatly missed. We were blessed to have been able to see you and spend time with you almost daily for the last 3 years living side by side on the property that we all have enjoyed so much. Lots of great memories were made that will never be forgotten. We love you Paw Paw John, we will see you again, rest in peace.

    • Josephine Kitchen on December 19, 2020 at 11:44 am

      Beautiful, Linda.

  2. Lakeshia & Eric Watts on December 19, 2020 at 7:44 pm

    “Big John,” my friend,
    I love to say, “You came late, but you came strong!” You went from being a warrior of principle to being the champion of love- a true legacy.
    Eric & I will miss our traditional BBQ Christmas lunch at the original Golden Rule. It is bittersweet, but we will see you at a better event in eternity.

    • Josephine A Kitchen on December 20, 2020 at 11:25 am

      You said it all my friend. Jo Anna

    • Josephine A Kitchen on December 20, 2020 at 11:26 am

      I love this, my friend. So true!

  3. Anonymous on December 21, 2020 at 8:21 am

    Go rest high on that mountain
    I’ll be seeing you! ❤️

  4. Nan Ryan on December 21, 2020 at 8:30 am

    I am a part John’s wonderful family ,,Joanna kitchens is my first cousin I didn’t get to know John well but from what I do know and have seen what a wonderful person…. always there for my cousin and her family great father and dad and friend you will be missed dearly… I will see you in heaven for all eternity….

  5. Josephine A Kitchen on December 21, 2020 at 4:02 pm

    Thank you Nan. He loved this family with all he had.

  6. Cheryl Kruse on December 26, 2020 at 9:38 am

    It breaks my heart to learn of John’s passing. John always had a funny story and was alway ready to talk about the Lord. I know he’s in Heaven entertaining everyone. Our loss is Heaven’s gain.

    Love you, JoAnna ❤️❤️

    • Josephine A Kitchen on December 28, 2020 at 7:33 am

      Yes he was Cheryl and he got to spend Christmas with Jesus!

  7. Michael Boutwell on December 30, 2020 at 7:42 pm

    Dear Jo, I am so sorry about John. My heart breaks for you but at the same time, I am so happy that y’all were able to be together. Please know that you and John will be in my prayers. I love you!

    Cousin Michael

    • Josephine A Kitchen on January 7, 2021 at 4:25 pm

      Thank you, Cousin Michael for your kind words. I love you and hope to see you soon.

  8. Amy Baird on January 8, 2021 at 8:26 am

    A kind & gentle man who was devoted to Jo Anna. That’s how I remember John.
    ” my mind still talks to you, my heart still looks for you, but my soul knows you’re at peace”.
    I ‘ll see you again, my friend. Love to Jo Anna

  9. Josephine Kitchen on March 20, 2021 at 9:11 pm

    Just saw this, Amy … thank you for these beautiful words.