August 23, 2012

Kathleen L. Brown Kirkman

KOKOMO — Kathleen L. Brown Kirkman, 70, Kokomo, died at 11:20 a.m. Wednesday, Aug. 22, 2012, at St. Vincent Hospital, Indianapolis. 

She was born July 5, 1942, in Detroit, Mich., the daughter of Richard and Frances Mallon Winter. In 1964, she married Robert Brown, and they later divorced. In January 2002 she married Charles Kirkman, who survives. 

Kathleen was a 1960 graduate of Pershing High School, Detroit, and attended Detroit Business College. Kathy’s first husband was in the U.S. Air Force and was sent to Okinawa, Japan. From there they moved to Bunker Hill AFB, now known as Grissom AFB. They settled in Logansport, where she took a job at Memorial Hospital and continued to work there for 20 years. During the time she lived in Logansport, she was active in the PTA, Home Ec Clubs, played tennis, did cake decorating and traveled with the Logansport High School Speech Team as a judge.

After moving to Kokomo, Kathleen took a job at the Kokomo Howard County Public Library as a reference clerk. She spent 18 years working at the library. While living in Kokomo, Kathleen met the love of her life, Charles T. Kirkman and began a new adventure in motorcycling.  Together they traveled to Canada, west to Mount Rushmore, south to Florida and east to New York state.

Kathleen was a member of Lutheran Church of Our Redeemer and attended Poplar Grove UMC and Parr UMC.  She was a member of the American Motorcycle Association as well as the Midnight Riders, MC and she was also involved in the Country Friends Home Ec Club. Kathleen was also active with the Kokomo Park Band and was better known as “Katie the Program Lady.” She was a member of the board and was in charge of program distribution for 15 years.

Kathleen is survived by her husband, Charles, Kokomo; children, Michelle (Brown) Janssen and husband, Wade,  Berea, Ky., and Pamela (Brown) Houk, Indianapolis; stepson, Todd Kirkman and his wife, Melissa, Kokomo; grandchildren, Brittany Houk and companion, Hosey Jones, Fort Wayne, Alyssa (Houk) Jean-Baptiste and husband, Marcello,  Indianapolis, and Noah Janssen, Berea, Ky.; stepgrandchildren, Allie and Cindy Kirkman, both of Whitestown, and Kole Kirkman, Kokomo; great-grandchildren, Trae-Sean Jean-Baptiste, and Markell Jean-Baptiste, both of Indianapolis, and Zaidyn Jones, Fort Wayne; sisters, Eileen (Winter) Widdison and husband, Kevin, Grants Pass, Ore., and Jeanne (Winter) Sonkiss and husband, Tom, White Lake, Mich.; in-laws, Vernis and Rosabelle Kirkman; and sister-in-law, Ramona Duncan, all of Kokomo.

She was preceded in death by her parents; two brothers, James Winter, and Richard P. Winter; and stepson, Kirt Kirkman.

Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Monday at Shiloh United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall, 5741 W. 100 South, with Pastors John Newman and B.J. Siefert officiating. Burial will follow in Mound Cemetery, Howard County. 

Friends may call from 2 to 6 p.m. Sunday at the church fellowship hall. In lieu of flowers, Kathleen requested that memorial contributions be made to the Kokomo Park Band or to the Poplar Grove UMC, with envelopes available.

Stout & Son Funeral Home, Russiaville Chapel, is assisting the family with arrangements. Messages of condolence may be left online at

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