Kirkpatrick, 61, passed away Monday morning following a serious illness that required hospitalization earlier this month.
Mayor Jim Sells said Kirkpatrick's death came as a shock. Kirkpatrick was absent from last week's BMA meeting, but board members had gotten word he was improving.
“That last word I'd gotten was he was getting better, and the next thing I knew he was gone,” Sells told the Times News on Monday. “The town of Rogersville is going to miss him. He was very active in his church. He was very active in the town and activities that went on in town. The city council is going to miss him.”
Sells added, “He was very good with all the boards he was on. He was very conscientious with what he was doing. He did things for the betterment of the town and for the citizens of Rogersville. He was just an all-around good fellow.”
Kirkpatrick is the husband of Hawkins County Register of Deeds Judy Kirkpatrick. He owned and operated Patriot Title Co. in Kingsport.
It's been a difficult few months for his family. In October, Kirkpatrick's mother, Mary Evelyn Kirkpatrick, passed away, and in November his father-in-law, Gail Carpenter, passed away.
Kirkpatrick was elected to the Rogersville BMA in 2013 and elected to his second term in 2017.
Lifelong friend and fellow Rogersville Alderman Mark DeWitte described Kirkpatrick as the “voice of reason.”
“I’ve known Craig since our high school days and thought highly of him,” DeWitte said. “He added a voice of reason to the workings of the Rogersville BMA and really gave a lot of thought and input to many issues. I also admired his entrepreneurial skills and ability to make businesses successful. I guess you could say we grew up together, and his family and the community have lost a good man.”
Christian-Sells Funeral Home in Rogersville is in charge of the arrangements.
Below are a few examples of the sentiments being expressed on the Tribute Wall on the Christian-Sells website:
— “Craig was an amazing person who could bring a smile, or make you think about a point.”
— “Craig was such a great man who loved his community. His greatest loves were Judy, Scott and his family. I can see Mary Evelyn welcoming him home.”
— “Craig was such an amazing person. Craig and Judy have been there for my family and I just like family and I love them so much and I am going to miss Craig so much.”
— “A good man and friend all of my life. Will be missed by us and our community. Our thoughts and prayers are with Judy and his sister, Nancy.”
Visitation will be at Christian-Sells on Friday 4-6 p.m., followed by the memorial service at 6 p.m.