Owen Thomas Childress
1932 - 2020
Owen Thomas Childress, age 88, of Cave City, began his celebration of eternal life with Christ on September 19, 2020. He was born on August 25, 1932 in Edmonson County, Kentucky to the late Lawrence and Linda Pierce Childress. He is survived by his wife of 66 years, Lois Kathleen Barbour Childress.
Owen's early life in Sugar Camp Hollow and the small community of Union Light was hard, but filled with love and the joy of growing up with 11 siblings. He attended school in a one-room schoolhouse, and at the age of 20, left home "to make something of himself" and traveled to a recruiting station in Louisville. He proudly served his country in the United States Marine Corps, with his wife and two daughters by his side, and retired with the rank of Master Sergeant after 20 years of dedicated service. He served in Vietnam and was awarded The Navy Commendation Medal for Meritorious Service. He returned home to his Kentucky roots in 1972 and fulfilled his dream of farming and raising cattle with the loving support of his wife, Kathy. In 2003 he completed the rebuilding of a Civil War era log cabin, where he died peacefully.
He never met a stranger and enjoyed his frequent visits to the Pig Restaurant with his grandson, Brandon. In later years, you could find him sitting at a table with friends at the Watermill Restaurant, telling stories and aggravating his good friend, Ray Gossett.
His love of his country was only outweighed by his love for Jesus. Saved at the age of 11 at a revival at Union Light Missionary Baptist Church, he found joy in his church roots upon returning to Kentucky. He was a member of Union Light Missionary Baptist Church, then Stockholm United Baptist Church, and in later years, Bon Ayr Missionary Baptist Church. He traveled to over 100 churches in Kentucky, Tennessee, and Alabama. He sang in the Friendship Quartet and regularly shared his gift of song with residents at the Edmonson County Nursing Home. In 1996 he wrote a song, "My Lord is Watching Over Me" and was known for his singing of "I'm Gonna Die on the Battlefield." In his final days, he found comfort as friends and family visited and sang gospel hymns.
In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by his brothers Howard, Georgie, and Wade Childress; and sisters, Rosie Harrison, Pauline Sanders, and Valaria Jeffries.
In addition to his wife, he leaves to honor his memory: two daughters, Sherry Ward and her husband Richard of Chillicothe, Ohio; and Denise Mahaney and her husband Joe of Bowling Green; grandchildren, Brandon Childress and his wife Carnessa, Jordan Mahaney, Ryan Mahaney, Ethan Mahaney, Susan Lieving and her husband Brian, Hudson Ward and his wife Judy; great-grandchildren, Charlotte White and her husband James, Nova Grey Mahaney, Laney and Lindsey Lieving; Hudson, Madison, and Elison Ward; and Dylan and Cameron Hawkins. He is also survived by his sister, Aleen James; brothers, Leland, Floyd and his wife Christine, Kenneth and his wife Nina, and Elmo and his wife Vernice Childress; and many nieces, nephews, and cousins who were all dear to his heart. A special thanks to his niece, Anna Jill Schultz, who assisted in lovingly caring for him for three years.
Owen loved his rescued furry cat companion, Millie Jane, and the family dog, Dixie, who he tried to unsuccessfully shoo away from the farm. Memorial contributions may be made to Barren River Animal Welfare Association.
A private funeral will be held. Internment will be at Camp Ground Cemetery with military honors by Barren County DAV. The family will receive friends from 4:00 - 7:00pm on Wednesday, September 23, 2020, at the Patton Funeral Home Park City Chapel.
-ARRANGEMENTS HAVE BEEN ENTRUSTED TO PATTON FUNERAL HOME PARK CITY CHAPEL -
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