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Mena, Arkansas, News covering Polk County and the surrounding area

June Vernoise Kitchens Kesterson

June Vernoise Kitchens Kesterson was born June 6, 1936, the fifth of six siblings to Bert and Pearl Kitchens in the community Liberty Hill (Dierks) Arkansas. She attended and graduated from school in Dierks, Arkansas. June was united in marriage to Jim Kesterson on October 6, 1955, in Cashmere, WA. They were married 28 years until his death on December 8, 1983.

Mama attended school in Dierks, Arkansas, where she enjoyed playing basketball, which she was really good at. She received scholarships to play at colleges in Colorado and Texarkana but declined to attend, instead choosing to get married to Jim.

Mama was a big fan of the Arkansas Razorbacks, whether they were winning or not, she enjoyed shopping and going out to eat. She loved going to church and singing, above all else though she loved God, her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren, all of whom were her pride and joy.  Mama loved attending church. She was a charter member of the Pleasant Grove Church of the Nazarene. She was a song leader for many years. She had a beautiful voice and played the piano, which she was self-taught.

Mama worked at Renova (shirt factory) for several years. Mama and Daddy raised chickens through the years. As well Mama worked as a dietician at the Polk County Memorial Hospital and retired after many years at Mena Medical Center. After retirement Mama decided to work part time at Area Agency  and also to work part time at Beasley-Wood Funeral Home as a night sitter for nighttime family visitations.

She is preceded in death by her parents, Bert and Pearl Kitchens; husband, Jim Kesterson; son, Eddy Kesterson; daughter, Sharon Kesterson; sisters, Lorene Krantz, Jane Wallace, Faye Dixon; brothers, Dorman Kitchens, Dwight Kitchens; great-grandchild; Coltor Lane; son-in-law, Bill Johnston.

She is survived by her son, Brian Kesterson and wife Sonja of Mena, Arkansas; daughters, Phyllis Sirmon and husband Gregg of Mena, Arkansas, Lisa Callahan and husband Tommey of Mena, Arkansas; grandchildren, Clint Lane, Dana Ward and husband Chris, Ashley Sharp and husband Scott, Kayla White, Sallie Riggins and husband Will, Mason Johnston and wife Jessica; Pilar Fowler and husband Nathan, Allie Dowdy, and husband Donald, Sage Kesterson and wife Jayzlee, Kiara Kesterson, and Lila Kesterson; 24 great-grandchildren; 2 great-great-grandchildren; brothers-in-law, Vaughn Kesterson and wife Mary, Hollis Kesterson and wife Marsha, sisters-in-law, Arlene Kesterson and Sue Kesterson; and several nieces, nephews, friends and a special friend Dee Roberts.

The family would like to extend a special thanks to Elite Hospice and the staff at Homewood Cottages, especially cottage #5.

Services for Mrs. Kesterson will be held at 10:00 a.m., Thursday, July 27, 2023, at the Pleasant Grove Church of Nazarene in Cove, Arkansas. Brother Steve Bradley and Brother Mark Lyle will be officiating under the direction of Beasley-Wood Funeral Home. Interment will follow at the Pleasant Grove Cemetery in Cove, Arkansas. There will be a visitation held Wednesday, July 26, 2023, at Beasley-Wood Funeral Home from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

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