Christine Blackburn entered into eternal rest on Saturday, March 26, 2016. Chris was born in McMinnville, TN on July 23, 1930, but moved to Nashville as a young child. She was the daughter of Felix Herbert and Eula Mai (VanHooser) Redmon.
She was preceded in death by her devoted husband of 53 years, Kenneth Wayne Blackburn Sr.
Knowing that even in their saddest days without her, God will be under their sorrow holding them up, Chris is survived by a loving family: daughter Elaine B. Smith (Billy F) of Lone Oak, daughter Kay B. Smith of Reidland, son Kenneth Wayne Blackburn Jr (Rhonda) of Sharpe, and son Lee R Blackburn (Pam) of Lone Oak.
"Granny" was beloved by six grandchildren: Ashley Posey (Scott) of Lone Oak; Amy Rutledge (Derek) of Apex, NC; Tyler W Smith of Lexington; Lauren Blackburn of Paducah, Allee Blackburn of Princeton, and Baylee Blackburn of Louisville.
Chris leaves a lasting legacy in her 7 great-grandchildren: triplets Gavin, Mason, and Brooke Posey; twins Gus and Owen Rutledge, and sister Tess Rutledge, and Brody Shannon.
Chris was also preceded in her homegoing by siblings Leon Brown Redmon and Dorothy Story of Nashville. Her love and admiration for her siblings were carried over into heaven. "Dot" was responsible for Chris' life-long name of "Honey Bunch," as Dot had seen a baby doll named "Honey Bunch" advertised in a magazine and cried for one. When Chris was born, they told Dot she had her Honey Bunch. Five months later at Christmas, Chris was official named "Christine," when as an infant she was allowed to select her own name by reaching into a pot.
Honey Bunch will be dearly missed by her loving brother Kenneth Redmond (Joyce), brother-in-law Louis Blackburn, numerous nieces and nephews, and long-time friends.
Chris & Ken (Papa) eloped at a young age on December 1, 1946 and 50 years later on their golden wedding anniversary, must have surely thought they "over-wished" on that special day. They had a life-long practice of holding hands as they drifted off to sleep.
As their children married, they established the tradition of giving the kids their first load of groceries when they wed - thinking each couple might have received many wonderful gifts, but they wanted to also make sure they ate! Parents!
Cherishing her role as a supportive military wife, Chris would hang a map on the wall to track the different ports where Ken's assigned submarine docked while on military maneuvers. She was always elated when the sub pulled into home port after operations and suddenly "the whole world seemed right." She enjoyed living in San Diego, Pearl Harbor, when it was still a US territory; Norfolk, VA; Bainbridge, MD; Key West, in the early Sixties; and Rough & Ready Island, CA, before "retiring" from military life to Paducah in 1967 and living the last 47 years of her life in the first and only house she & Ken ever owned.
After losing Ken in 2000, Chris spent a lot of hours on her computer as the communication hub for family near and far and browsing the internet to put together a fabulous collection of antique US Navy Sweetheart pins from WWI & II. She always wore the unique pins with pride and felt they were "better than diamonds."
Chris also enjoyed spending time in The Word, reading, and listening to sermons on CD. She also enjoyed working on a yearly family publication released each year at Christmas documenting some aspect of family life - history, funny sayings, and recipes. A yearly Veteran's card was also designed in honor of Ken's military service, and delivered to the VA Hospital in Marion, IL on Ken's birthday. These cards will be distributed on each patient's breakfast tray on Veteran's Day.
In January of 2013 Chris suffered a massive stroke, but courageously battled her way back over the course of 9 months with the help of the staff at Parkview Rehab. Special thanks to Drs. Polly LeBuhn & Joseph Ashburn & staff, as well as Lourdes Hospice and all of the devoted caregivers for helping Chris to remain in her beloved home.
Visitation will be at Milner & Orr of Paducah on Tuesday, March 29, at 11:00am, with the funeral service following immediately afterwards at 1:00 p.m. with Rev. Bob Martin officiating. Services will conclude with burial at Woodlawn Memorial Gardens. Pallbearers will be Derek Rutledge, Scott Posey, Gavin Posey, Mason Posey, & Tyler Smith.
In lieu of flowers Memorial gifts can be made to the Wounded Warriors Project, P.O Box 758517, Topeka, Kansas 66675 or online at https://www.woundedwarriorproject.org/
Tuesday, March 29th, 2016 1:00pm, Milnor & Orr
Woodlawn Memorial Gardens