Virginia “Ginny” (Johnson) McKissick, 85, was called home to her Lord and Savior on September 16, 2022 at her daughter Susan's home, surrounded by her loving family. She was embraced at the gates of heaven by her parents James “Jim” and Pearlie (Slone) Johnson, her husband Robert “Bob” McKissick, her loving daughter, “defender and protector” Robin Key, along with 7 brothers and 3 sisters.
In the rolling hills of Prestonburg, Kentucky Ginny was born eleventh of sixteen children. She learned at an early age, with a family this size, there were three crucial skills a person needed most to survive. First and foremost being “love endlessly” for both her Lord and Savior as well as her enormous family! The second, a necessity, and later becoming one of her favorite pastimes was “gardening.” With many mouths to feed and very humble beginnings, the only way to survive such times as those, was with a hearty and plentiful garden! The third and possibly the hardest for any of us is “Sacrifice." This is one that would seem to be asked in every season of her life. At the very core of her beliefs and values is service to others. After leaving school finishing just the eighth grade, she answered the call of her family. Needing to help her elder brothers in their homes, as they welcomed home their own children. Assisting as a homemaker, she learned what would be her life’s work.
After leaving the hills, headed northbound with several sisters. She landed in Lima where she met Bob Mckissick as she described it “love at first sight!” They went about the business of building a large and very close knit family of seven. One lone son to the outnumbered and overpowered six beautiful daughters. While growing this family and making their home, Ginny would have to recall all that she learned. “Love” and trust the Lord to prosper her marriage also so she could lead her family in the way they should go; to live and follow the Word. Next was that trusty “garden” that could feed her family; half that of her childhood, but never the less still great in size. And finally was “Sacrifice.” Although difficult for most, she handled this burden with ease, always willing to go without so that her children would have all they needed!
It’s been said a true test of children’s love is if they will run into your arms while you are holding nothing for them in your hands. If this is the standard, she had love and wealth beyond measure. Her children of course loved her, as all do, but this, an adoration that few understand. Although each of her children left home to make their own families, it wouldn’t have appeared they ever left. Her home, a gathering place. On any given day of the week, you could walk through the door and find several of her children and grandchildren visiting; playing cards, listening to music, watching old movies, and of course drinking coffee all the day long.
She is survived by her children, Debra “Debbie” (Warren) Mason, Cynthia “Cyndi” (Jim) Moore, Pamela “Pam” (Wendell) Hurley, Susan (Bobby) Park, William “Bill” McKissick, and Katherine “Kathy” (Mike) Bishop; twenty grandchildren; fifty-six great grandchildren; seven great-great grandchildren; and siblings Alan Johnson, Emmet Jr. Johnson, Daisy Clemons, and Marie Arnett.
The family will receive friends from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, September 21, 2022, at Chamberlain-Huckeriede Funeral Home, Lima, Ohio. A celebration of life service will begin at 1 p.m. on Thursday, September 22, 2022, with visitation 1 hour prior at Chamberlain-Huckeriede Funeral Home. Dean Evans will officiate the service followed by a burial at Memorial Park Cemetery, Lima.
Memorial contributions may be made to Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
Arrangements handled by Chamberlain-Huckeriede Funeral Home. Condolences may be expressed at www.chamberlainhuckeriede.com