November 02, 2022

Audrey Leafy Kennedy, age 97 of Little Caney Ridge passed away peacefully at her home on Wednesday, October 26, 2022. Born in Russell County she was a daughter of the late Beldon Utah and Bessie Maine Owens Kiser. She was a homemaker and a member of Rugsby Freewill Baptist Church for 70 years.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband of 75 years, Emit Allen Kennedy; a special son-in-law, Bentrus Smith and two brothers, Derl and wife Patty Kiser and Maynard “Curly” and wife Virginia Mustard Kiser.

Survivors include her six children, Ronald (Ginger) Kennedy, Clintwood, Iris Lynn Waade of Minneapolis, Mn., Judy Smith of Abingdon, Karen Kennedy of Big Stone Gap, Benny (Zeldra) Kennedy of Caney Ridge and Parkis (Jennifer) Kennedy, Bristol; seven grandchildren, Rob (Nanci) Waade, Tracy Kennedy (Sam) Mullins, Bryan (Fona) Smith, Darren (Rachel) Smith, Benjamin (Tiffany) Kennedy, David Kennedy and Joseph Kennedy; seven great-grandchildren, Miranda and Ozzy Waade, Riley and Emma Mullins, Hayden, Landon and Clayton Hickman; one great-great grandson, Jordan Michael Waade; a sister, Yvonne Sweeney of Clintwood, and several special nieces and nephews.

Funeral services were conducted 11 a.m. Sunday, October 30, 2022 at Rugsby Chapel, Coeburn with Robert Phipps officiating. Entombment followed in the Rugsby Cemetery, Coeburn. Pallbearers were grandsons and great-grandsons. The family received friends after 6 p.m. on Saturday, October 29, 2022 at the church, prior to a song service at 7 p.m. with Pastor Frank Hall officiating. Online condolences may be sent to

In lieu of flowers donations may be made to Rugsby Cemetery in care of Benny Kennedy, 6869 DC Caney Ridge Road, Coeburn, VA 24230.

Haysi Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements

Mother passed away after living on this earth for 97 years. She and daddy had been married 75 years at the time of his death in 2016. God blessed them with six children.

Mother lived on Caney Ridge most of her adult life. Mother was a Christian for 77 years and was very active in Rugsby Sunday School. The children on Caney Ridge who attended loved her very much. Daddy and Mother would host parties for the children in the basement on Halloween and Christmas. She always made sure everyone got a special treat for Christmas.

Mother loved her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. She loved their visits and you could see the excitement and joy she had when they came to see her. She had a special bond with children of relatives and friends who visited. These children often called her Mamaw. Her door was always open for family, friends and the community.

Mother, we loved and respected you so much and thank you for all the love and guidance you gave us. The world would be a much better place if all children had a wonderful, nurturing mother like you.

We want to express our eternal gratitude to her wonderful caregivers, who loved and faithfully cared for her for 12 years, Karen Rose, Juanita Blevins and Angie Stanley, we can never thank you enough for all you did for our precious mother.

Special thanks to Ronald Counts who called and checked on Mother every Sunday.