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Gary “Kentruck” Kendrick graced the world with his spirit on May 13, 1953, the fourth son of Perry and Christine (Coleman) Kendrick. Big brothers, Perry Jr, Harold Dean and Eddie Ray and later “Sissy” Shelbia Diane completed the Kendrick family.
Dad grew up in Pikeville, Kentucky and around the age of ten, began shining shoes in the local parks, often times telling patrons that he was orphaned or adopted to get larger tips until word got back to his Mama and she publicly whipped him in the park. He was ornery, as anyone who knew him could attest, and his best friend Bony McCoy and him were constantly getting into skirmishes throughout the community.
Dad met our Mom, Debbie Sue, who precedes him in death, while working at Pikeville Hospital and courted her through a series of Car Wash dates, eventually asking for her hand in marriage. They moved back to Kansas to raise their family, a son, Joshua Douglas, and daughters Ashley Paige and Molly Rashel.
Dad intended to become a nurse, but always said his hillbilly got in the way of Medical Terminology so he settled into a job at Consolidated in Hutchinson, Kansas, where he built life-long friendships. He obtained his CDL in the mid-nineties, working locally until he bought his first truck, establishing Kendrick Trucking. For many years, he trekked cross-country, but family was always his highest priority and he rarely missed a sporting event or musical program. He was a huge supporter of his kids and was a vocal advocate for them. We were stronger with him in our corner.
Dad and Mom split up in 2005 and they went their separate ways, but Dad was always adamant that Mom was the love of his life, and he sat at her bedside throughout her illness, reminiscing about happier times. Dad was an avid traveler, globetrotting across many different countries, making friends everywhere he went. He was a genuine lover of people and appreciated the openness of other cultures and their verve for life. His final trip was to the Philippines in September of 2022.
Dad was diagnosed with terminal cancer in December of 2022. He spent his final months surrounded by his loved ones and doling out advice to his grandchildren. He passed on March 25, 2023, peacefully in his sleep. He is preceded in death by his parents, his brothers, Perry Jr and Eddie Ray. He is survived by his children, Joshua (Allie), Ashley, Molly (Tyler); a brother, Harold (Emmonetta) Kendrick; a sister, Shelbia Diane (Tim) Williamson, all of Dayton, Tennessee; ten grandchildren: Clayton, Colton, Kaleb, Harper, Hudson, Harlow, Halston, Perry, Sutton and Garrytt; and numerous nieces and nephews.
Dad has been cremated and per his request, no service will be performed. Memorial contributions may be made to Good Shephard Hospice in care of Inman Funeral Home; 312 E. Center; Inman, KS 67546. To leave a condolence for the family, visit: www.inmanfh.com.
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