John Lloyd Kuykendall, 72, passed away on Friday, November 23, 2012 in Llano, Texas. A visitation was held Tuesday, November 27, 2012 from 5:00 – 7:00 pm at the Waldrope-Hatfield-Hawthorne Funeral Home in Llano, Texas. A private burial service will be held at the Kuykendall Cemetery. A Celebration of Life service for John Kuykendall will be at the Lutie Watkins Memorial United Methodist Church, 800 Wright Street, Llano, Texas on Wednesday, November 28 at 3:00 pm with fellowship and refreshments following the service.
The Celebration will be led by Doug Suggs, Preacher, Cherokee Church of Christ, Dick West, preacher, Lutie Watkins Memorial United Methodist Church, and Rodney Tedford, former preacher at Llano Church of Christ and current preacher at Avenue T Church of Christ in Temple, Texas.
John Kuykendall was born in Temple, Texas on September 4, 1940 to James and Zudora Kuykendall and was reared on the family ranch outside of Cherokee, Texas in San Saba County. John graduated from Cherokee High School and enrolled in Tarleton State University. He transferred to Texas A&M College and graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Animal Science in 1963. That same year he married his high school sweetheart, Patricia Howell, on July 13, 1963. He continued his education at Texas A&M University and graduated with a Master of Science degree in Animal Science in 1965. John loved Texas A&M University and was on the wool, meats, and livestock judging teams during his time in college. Throughout his life he continued to participate in Aggie events in the community including Aggie Muster/Fish Fry, attended Texas A&M football games, and enjoyed seeing both of his children and granddaughter continue their education at his alma mater. During football season you could always see his Aggie flag flying at their family home.
John enjoyed a 31- year career with Texas AgriLife Extension Service first as an assistant agent in Jim Wells County and then for 29 years in Llano County. Through his tenure as County Extension agent John provided sound advice and expertise to agriculture producers, ranchers, and homeowners. He worked with producers to perform result demonstration projects, research projects, and educational programs. He was honored by Extension in November 1983 with the agency’s highest award, the Superior Service Award, for his leadership throughout the county and state. In 2007, John was inducted into the Llano Hall of Fame by the Llano Chamber of Commerce and the Llano Memorial Hospital for recognition of his service to Llano County. John exemplified the traits of a true cowboy and in 2009 won the Cowboy of the Year Award from the Hill Country Livestock Raisers Association. John was known for his livestock evaluation expertise and judged numerous, county, regional and state shows. Although he received many honors for his work, John especially had a tender place in his heart for the 4-H and Youth Development program. He enjoyed helping youth purchase animal projects, clip and trim animals for show, and coached numerous state-winning livestock judging teams. He always reminded parents and families that we are using animals to teach kids – this is more important than any blue ribbon. John and Patty were recognized with the Friend of 4-H Award in 2009 for their lifetime commitment to the 4-H and Youth Development Program.
Upon his retirement in 1995, John returned to carry on the work at Kuykendall Hereford Ranch. He poured all of his energy and enthusiasm into the ranch that has been in his family since 1878. Raising quality Hereford cattle for show steers and breeding stock was a passion and love that he and his brother have shared working the ranch together for many years during retirement. It was a thrill for him that Kuykendall Ranch was designated as a Texas Century Ranch by the Texas Department of Agriculture and he loved sharing the family heritage and ranch history with family and friends.
John and Patty Kuykendall are devout Christians. His faith was strong to the end and his love of Christ unquestionable. John served the Lord and his church as a member, deacon, and Bible schoolteacher at the Church of Christ in Llano and Cherokee. He devoted his life to fulfilling the purpose that the Lord had for him and used his gifts and abilities to serve others. John believed that living for Christ meant to love the Lord with all of your heart, mind and soul and to love your neighbor as yourself. He demonstrated his faith in God and love for people through his actions.
His commitment to service and family carried over to his children and grandchildren. While his children were growing up John could be seen helping them with their 4-H animal projects, coaching Little League baseball, leading church youth groups, chaperoning kids at 4-H camp, coaching 4-H livestock judging teams, attending piano recitals, and supporting his children in every activity. His grandchildren knew him as their PaPa. Nana and PaPa attended all of the grandchildren’s livestock, athletic, and school events including showing steers and goats, football games, baseball games, musical performances, school plays, graduations, and every other milestone that they could attend.
In addition to these activities, John loved spending time working in his garden and yard and nothing provided him more satisfaction than sharing his beautiful home grown tomatoes and pecans with friends and family. His garden and yard were magnificent and the envy of Llano gardeners but many benefited from his sharing of his produce and garden knowledge with others.
He is survived by his loving wife of 49 years, Patty Kuykendall; daughter Lisa Whittlesey and husband Randel of College Station, Texas; son Jeff and wife Veronica of Llano, Texas; grandchildren Taylor Whittlesey, Cole Whittlesey, Case John Kuykendall, Carson Kuykendall, Sydney Kuykendall and Harper Kuykendall; brother Lovell Kuykendall and wife Sandra of Cherokee, Texas and numerous nieces, nephew, and many dear friends.
Memorial contributions can be made in his memory to: Cherokee Church of Christ, 308 S Indian Ave, Cherokee, Texas 76832, Cherokee Children’s Home, P.O. Box 295, Cherokee, Texas 76832 or to the Llano County 4-H Program, 1447 E State Highway 71, Unit E Llano, Texas 78643.
Funeral arrangements made under the direction of Waldrope-Hatfield-Hawthorne Funeral Homes, Inc. Llano, Texas. E-mail condolences may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org or you may log onto our website, www.whhfuneralhome.com for online condolences.