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Carrie Lou Kirksey was the fourth child born to Riley and Bessie Lee Kirksey. She became a part of their lives on December 22, 1929. Because of her excessive hair, she was nicknamed “Shag”. Although she was the fourth child, she was the leader and took charge of all her siblings. When her parents were away from home, they gave everybody orders to do as Shag told them to do. this tradition followed them all their lives as they grew to love and respect her leadership.
She was the proud mother of three children, Billy Ray, Ida Louvenia (Marsha) and Dorothy (Dot Ann). She loved and was so proud of them.
Carrie Lou was educated at Thankful Elementary and Cobb High School where even her teachers saw what a leader and how smart she was. Shag often told the story of how she was skipped from second grade to third grade. Her favorite subject was Math. She showed what a whiz she was with figures and managing money. Ms. Shag could squeeze a nickel out of a quarter any day and showed her children how to do the same. She would say, “Don’t put all your pennies in one pot.” Even her grandchildren have their stories about her and money.
Aunt Shag, as she was called by many, always showed people they were loved, and they could be somebody. She was referred as a social worker in the neighborhood. If she knew where you could get free food, your utilities paid and clothes, everybody else would know. They even knew the time to be there and the days to go. They would report back to her what happened when they went and if they did not go, she wanted to know why not.
Shag enjoyed working word scramble puzzle books. She would finish a book in one day. It was hard to get her attention when she was busy searching for words. She also enjoyed traveling and would often boast about all the places she had visited, especially Mexico and being on a cruise ship. When returning from a trip, before arriving home she would ask, “Where are we going next?” Shag loved family gatherings and family reunions so much that she would get so excited and start planning what she was going to wear months in advance. When the family reunions would be held in Anniston, for years she collected the money for the reunion, and she wanted everyone to come even if they had to set up a layaway plan with her (pay what they could afford by the month). She kept a record book of all the monies she received (name, date paid, amount paid (lol), and amount owed).
Sister Kirksey accepted Christ as her Lord and Savior at an early age and joined Thankful Baptist Church. Later as an adult she united with Rest Haven Baptist Church where she served as Secretary to the Ushers. She was also an active Sunday School member. She was always prepared for her lesson. Sister Kirksey did not wait until Saturday to start preparing for Sunday. She always did her lesson and daily devotion early in the morning. “Don’t bother me, I’m reading my Bible” she would say. Along with Sister Morris, she visited the sick and shut in to pray and encourage them. After moving to Atlanta, she attended Elizabeth Baptist Church for Worship Service, Bible Study, and Sunday School.
Ms. Kirksey departed this life on earth Sunday, October 9th surrounded by her children and grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents, Riley and Bessie Lee Kirksey; three sisters, Clarice, Bernice, and Annie Jo; five brothers, Charles Edward, Roy Huitt, Willie Clyde, Donald Edward, and Larry Gene; one son, Billy Ray Kirksey; and one son-in-law, Walter Knox, Sr.
She leaves to cherish her memory: two devoted daughters, Ida Knox (Marsha, Sister), and Dorothy (Dot Ann) Holloway; a devoted son-in-law, Larry (Handyman) Holloway; seven grandchildren, Walter Knox, Jr. (Milaune), Larry Holloway, Jr., Sharbillysia Baker, Wyvitra Stokes (Travis), LaVoris Holloway (Natasha), Billytra Kirksey, Carabillyse Kirksey; sixteen great-grandchildren; one great-greatgrandchild that the Lord allowed her to hold and love on; a loving and caring niece (who is like a daughter) Helen Copeland; several nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends. `