Osa Bell "Ocie" (Minerd) Kennedy was born on May 12, 1880 or 1882 in or near Philippi, Barbour County, WV, the daughter of Henry C. and Sarah Catherine (Croston) Minerd.
At the age of 21 or 23, on July 28, 1903, Ocie was joined in matrimony with 24-year-old William "Boyer" Kennedy (Jan. 2, 1878-1976). The informant for their marriage license was their neighbor Melchior Male of Barbour County. Rev. Israel Moats, who performed many weddings in the extended Minard-Kennedy-Mayle family, conducted the ceremony at the groom's residence.
Their marriage endured for an extraordinary 72 years until the separation of death.
It is not known how William was closely connected with Ocie's uncle and aunt, Josiah and Ruth Ann (Minard) Kennedy Sr. but there must have been some family link, even if somewhat distant.
The Kennedys resided at Moatsville and produced eight children -- Virginia "Jennie" Newman, Delbert Kennedy, Raymond Kennedy, Luther Kennedy, Gaston Kennedy, Herbert "Hoover" Kennedy, Ralph Kennedy and Rev. Isaac "Brother Ike" Kennedy.
Ocie developed a heavy growth of facial hair which included a dark mustache and beard. She often wore a scarf to hide the bearded portion of her face, although the mustache was always clearly evident.
When the 1910 census was taken, Boyer and Ocie lived near Philippi, where he worked as a general farmer.
The 1920 census shows the family, now with four children, near Meriden in Philippi.
In the 1930 census, Boyer is shown as a farmer, with seven young sons in the home.
They attended the Olive Hill Wesleyan Methodist Church.
When the federal census enumeration again was made in 1940, the Kennedys lived in Philippi. Boyer had no occupation that year, but son Luther earned a living as a laborer on road projects, while Delbert was listed by the census-taker as a "new worker." Among their near neighbors were their married son Raymond and family; the widowed Laura "Fez" (Mayle) Croston whose daughter Violene married the Kennedys' son Ralph; and distant cousins Dow and Etta Mayles and Joseph and Missouri Mayles. Every single one of those family groups had stayed in the same homes circa 1935-1940.
Sadly, the Kennedys suffered the mysterious death of their son Raymond in 1950.
Ocie was named in the newspaper obituary of her sister Icie Kennedy in 1962, and was living in Philippi at the time.
She died at home on May 13, 1972, a day after celebrating her 92nd birthday. An obituary in the Barbour Democrat noted that she was survived by 25 grandchildren, 32 great-grandchildren and two great-great grandchildren. Rev. Murry Mayle officiated at her funeral service, held in the family church, followed by interment in Welch Cemetery.
Boyer outlived her by four years, and became blind toward the end..
He passed away on Aug. 20, 1976, at age 98, with burial at Welch Cemetery, following funeral services held in the family church, led by Rev. Winfield Mayle.
~ Daughter Virginia "Jennie" (Kennedy) Newman ~
Daughter Virginia "Jennie" Kennedy (1913-1991) was born in 1913.
She married George Allen Newman (1907-1979), son of Columbus and Della (Kennedy) Newman. The wedding was held on Sept. 10, 1928 at Meriden, near Philippi. She was age 16, and he 21, at the time of marriage. Rev. M.C. Harris of the A.M.E. Church officiated. Her father provided the details for their marriage license, and fibbed about her age, stating she was 18.
Their eight children the couple bore together were Justine "Teen" Croston, Harvey Newman, Franklin D. "Frank" Newman, Robert Lee "Rob" Newman, Peggy JoAnn Dalton, Patricia Annabelle "Trish" Croston, Buster Newman and Cecil Newman.
They resided during the 1930s and '40s at Phillippi. The federal census enumeration of 1940 shows the family in Philippi, with George earning a living as a road work laborer.
Later they migrated to Enon Valley, Beaver County, PA.
George passed away on July 5, 1979. No obituary has yet to be located in the pages of the Beaver County Times.
Jennie outlived him by 12 years, and died at the age of 78 on Sept. 26, 1991, at the Medical Center of Beaver, PA. At the time of her death, said the Times, she and George were survived by 16 grandchildren and 18 great-grandchildren.
Daughter Justine "Teen" Newman (1930-2019) was born on May 10, 1930. At the age of 16, she married 23-year-old Denver Croston (1921-1996), son of Grover Cleveland and Frona Croston. Rev. M.C. Harris of the A.M.E. Church led the nuptials on Aug. 1, 1946 at Philippi. Showing how inter-connected the families were on the Chestnut Ridge, Justine's cousin Justine Mayle (of the family of Mary [Mayle[ Croston Hunter) was wedded to Denver's brother Shirley. Both families eventually migrated from Moatsville to Koppel, Beaver County, where employment was available. Justine and Denver were the parents of four offspring -- Thurwood "Jim" Croston, Randy Croston, Karen Lash and Pamela Cody. Sadly, Denver passed into eternity in May 1996. Justine survived him by 23 years. Said the Beaver County Times, she "enjoyed cooking and taking care of her family." Under hospice care, she died at home in Koppel, at age 89, on Nov. 21, 2019. An obituary was published in the Times. Rev. Matthew Bupp officiated at the funeral service, with burial in Beaver Falls Cemetery.
Son Harvey "Junior" Newman (1933-2008) was born on March 5, 1933/1934 in Moatsville, Barbour County. On Feb. 5, 1955, when he was 21 years of age, he married Elizabeth Mayle (1933-1988), daughter of Clifford and Thelma (Norris) Mayle. Both were age 21 at the time. Rev. Fred DeCost of the Methodist church performed the nuptials at his residence in neighboring Taylor County. The Newmans produced a family of two sons -- Dennis G. "Jerry" Newman and Kelly Newman. The newlyweds Harvey and Elizabeth almost immediately relocated to Beaver County, where he obtained employment as a crane operator with Babcock & Wilcox Steel in Koppel. The family resided in Darlington and held a membership in the First Primitive Methodist Church in Big Beaver. Grief blanketed the family when 50-year-old Elizabeth passed away on Oct. 5, 1988. Harvey outlived his wife by more than two decades. On Aug. 6, 2008, at the age of 74, Harvey died as a patient in the Medical Center of Beaver. The remains were interred in Grandview Cemetery in Big Beaver. His obituary was published in the Beaver County Times.
Franklin D. "Frank" Newman (1936-2013) was born on Oct. 29, 1936 in
Phillippi, and likely was named for the President of the United States, Franklin Delano Roosevelt. He moved to Beaver County with his parents and siblings, and secured
employment with Babcock & Wilcox Tubular Products. He wed Cleta M. DeCost
(1941-2005), and had three children -- Franklin D. Newman Jr., Lisa Daugherty
and Tammy Ann Walworth. They lived in Darlington near Beaver Falls, Beaver County.
After retiring, Frank worked for Vance's Landscaping and the Beaver Valley
Country Club. Sadly, Cleta died on Oct. 11, 2005, in New Waterford, OH.. Frank
spent his final illness residing at the home of his married daughter Tammy
Walwort in New Waterford. He died there at the age of 76 on Sept. 8, 2013.
Burial took place in Grandview Cemetery in Big Beaver Township.
Son Robert Lee "Rob" Newman (1943-2021) was born on Oct. 22, 1943 in Philippi. He moved with his parents to Beaver County, PA. Robert was joined in wedlock with Fredericka "Ricki" Krassman ( ? -living). For years, they have made their home in Ellwood City, PA. The three sons born to this marriage were Robert Newman, Richard Newman and Ryan Newman. Robert earned a living as a millwright rigger with Babcock & Wilcox Tubular Products. In his spare time he liked to collect antiques and other objects of interest. Sadly, as his health failed, he was admitted to Butler Memorial Hospital where he succumbed to death at the age of 77 on Jan. 23, 2021. The Beaver County Times published an obituary.
Daughter Peggy Joann "Jo" Newman (1946-2018) was born on Jan. 16, 1946 in Moatsville, Barbour County. In about 1964, she wed Loran Dalton (March 29, 1945- ? ), the son of Rosaline Dalton and a native of Grafton, Taylor County. Their marriage lasted for 54 years until the separation of death. The Daltons were the parents of Joe Dalton and Lorri Dalton-Vance. They relocated to Beaver County, PA, where they dwelled from 1971 to 1991 in Big Beaver Borough. Their next home was just over the state line in New Waterford, Columbiana County, OH. JoAnn enjoyed interior decorating and cooking. Loran has been described as "loving, caring, hardworking" and owned his own businesses, Dalton's Trucking Company and Dalton's Sanitary Service, Inc. Sadly, at the age of 72, she passed away on Oct. 4, 2018. Funeral services were led by Rev. Jim Spatholt of the Trinity United Methodist Church in New Springfield, OH, with interment afterward in Crest Haven Cemetery in New Waterford. An obituary was published in the Beaver County Times. Compounding the family's grieving, Loran succumbed only four days after his wife, on Oct. 8, 2018. Rev. Spatholt again preached the funeral sermon.
Daughter Patricia Annabelle "Trish" Newman (1949-living) was born on Nov. 26, 1949. At age 19, on June 21, 1969, she wed 21-year-old Thomas "Tommie Joe" Croston (1947- ? ), a native of Flemington, Taylor County and the son of (?) and Bertha (Croston) Mayle. Rev. Winfield S. Mayle of the Methodist Church officiated. Circa 2013-2021, they made their home in Canton, Stark County, OH.
~ Son Raymond Kennedy ~
Son Raymond Kennedy (1913-1950) was born in 1913.
At the age of 20, Raymond married 31-year-old Ollie Croston (1902- ? ), the daughter of Hans Croston, on June 10, 1933. She was 11 years older than her husband. Ollie had been married once before, and brought several children to the marriage, Amos Croston, Junior Croston and perhaps others.
Ray and Ollie went on to have at least one son of their own, Edward Kennedy Sr. Two other children were involved, but their precise connection is not yet ascertained -- Nina Norris and Lou Wagner.
Ray was a coal miner in Moatsville, near Philippi.
Ray died of unknown, mysterious causes at the age of 36 on May 2, 1950, and was buried near his parents in the Welch Cemetery. His brother Luther was the informant on the death certificate.
Son Edward Kennedy Sr. (1939-2010) was born on March 4, 1939, in Philippi. At the age of 29, he moved to Canton, Stark County, OH. He married Nadine Thelma (McCausland) Speakman ( ? -2003) on Aug. 30, 1969, when he was age 30. They resided in Sebring, near Canton, and attended the Alliance First Assembly of God. Thelma had been married before, to Lloyd E. Speakman, and brought these children into the marriage -- Kevin Speakman, Vicki Sue Tignor, Doug Speakman, Rick Speakman, Edward Kennedy Jr. and Deborah Miner. Edward and Thelma produced two more children of their own -- Ray Kennedy and Ron Kennedy. Said the Canton Repository, Edward worked at "the American Steel Foundry, where he was employed as a welder and a lift truck operator. [He] was a member of the Fraternal Order of the Eagles. As a pastime, he enjoyed hunting fishing and camping." Nadine passed away on Oct. 24, 2003, following 34 years of marriage. Edward also suffered the deaths of their son Kevin Speakman and grandson David Allen Tignor. Edward passed away at the age of 71, on March 7, 2010, at Mercy Medical Center. The Repository said he was survived by 13 grandchildren, several great grandchildren, and "several others that lovingly referred to him as 'Dad'." He was laid to rest at Highland Memorial Park, with his son Edward Jr. officiating at the funeral with Pastor Michael Ping of Alliance First Assembly of God.
Step-grandson Amos Croston made his home in Philippi circa 2010.
~ Son Luther Kennedy ~
Son Luther Kennedy (1916-1984) was born on April 30, 1918.
On Aug. 1, 1951, at Simpson, Taylor County, Luther wed Druzilla Mayle (1924-1984), also spelled "Druzella," the daughter of Joseph and Missouri Mayle. Luther was age 32, and Druzilla 27, at the time of marriage. Rev. Fred Decost, minister of the Olive Hill Church, performed the nuptials.
The Kennedys were longtime residents of Moatsville and had four children -- Marty Kennedy, Paul Kennedy, Susan Mayle and Connie Tabler.
Luther "was a former employee of Barbour Produce Company and attended the West Hill Wesley Methodist Church," reported the Barbour Democrat.
Druzilla passed away on April 23, 1984.
Luther only survived her by a few months. He died in Broaddus Hospital in Philippi on July 13, 1984, at the age of 67. Rev. Mark Miller and Rev. Murray Maley officiated at the funeral, with burial at Welch Cemetery.
Son Paul Kennedy married Robin Mayle, daughter of Henry and Mannie (Bell) Mayle. They lived in Alliance, Stark County and Carrollton, Carroll County, OH. Their three daughters were Kathlean D. "Katie" Kennedy, Sara Kennedy and Paula Kennedy. Tragedy rocked this family on June 6, 2014, when 25-year-old daughter Katie was killed in an automobile accident. Interment was in Evergreen Cemetery.
~ Son Rev. Isaac "Brother Ike" Kennedy ~
Son Rev. Isaac Kennedy (1919-2011) was born on July 20, 1919 (or 1921) in Chestnut Ridge.
At the age of 18, Isaac married 18-year-old Lillie Poe (1919-1994), the daughter of William A. "Bill" and Melvina (Mayle) Poe. The ceremony was held on July 2, 1937, at Philippi, led by Rev. O. Cunningham of the African Methodist Episcopal Church.
They together bore a brood of five children -- Isaac "Scott" Kennedy, Vulius H. "Kenny" Kennedy, Velma Marie Adams, Cheryl Rae Kennedy and Jeffrey Kennedy.
Isaac and Lillie both lived at Moatsville at the time of marriage, and remained there for decades. Known as "Brother Ike," Isaac made his living over the years as a carpenter, coal miner and farmer, but was better known as a Christian pastor and teacher.
An article in the Elkins Inter-Mountain said that he accepted Christ as his savior when he was in his early 20s, and became a Sunday School teacher and assistant pastor at the Allegheny Wesleyan Methodist Church of Olive Hill. He went on to become a Sunday School teacher and prayer meeting leader with the Chestnut Ridge African Methodist Church. Said the Inter-Mountain:
During the winter of 1958, Brother Ike and a group of faithful members began to pray that God would send a minister to the Chestnut Ridge Church and in the spring of 1959, the Rev. J. Frank Peoples came to the community to begin his ministry in the county. At that time, Brother Ike and Lilly joined the Chestnut Ridge Church, and he became the assistant pastor and teacher of the adult Sunday School class. In 1964, the congregation began to build a new building and Brother Ike spent hundreds of hours working on the church and sharing his construction skills. Brother Ike has preached revivals, youth rallies and missionary services and has taken part in or preached funerals for many members of the community. On April 12, 1997, Brother Ike was recognized by the congregations of Peoples Chapel Church and the Ford Run Pentecostal Church and many of his Christian friends for his 50 years of faithful living for Jesus Christ and four decades of ministry in and around Barbour County.
Sadly, Lillie passed away on April 28, 1994, ending a marital union of 57 years.
Isaac outlived her by 17 years. He made his home in his final years in Baughman Towers and Mansfield Place, Philippi. He passed away at the age of 90 on Aug. 23, 2011, at Davis Memorial Hospital in Elkins, the last of his immediate family. He joined his wife in eternal repose in Welch Cemetery, with funeral services led by Rev. Winfield Mayle and Rev. Jack Mayle.
Son Isaac "Scott" Kennedy ( ? - ? )
Son Vulius H. "Kenny" Kennedy (1944-2014) was born on Aug. 4, 1944 in Philippi. He was a Korean War veteran and migrated to Beaver Falls, Beaver County, PA where he graduated from high school in 1962. At age 24, he wed Ursula Orzechowski ( ? - ? ) on Feb. 17, 1968. They resided in Ellwood City, Beaver County, PA and had three children -- Michael Kennedy, Timothy "Skip" Kennedy and Steven Kennedy. Skilled as an electrician, Vulius was employed for 22 years by Babcock & Wilcox in Koppel near Beaver Falls and in 2008 retired from Ellwood Quality Steel. In his spare time, he was active with fishing, golfing, playing cards and woodworking, as well as coaching his three sons in the Wur-Ell-Wayne Baseball League. Vulius died at the age of 69 in Pittsburgh's UPMC Mercy Hospital on March 9, 2014. Following a mass of Christian Burial at the Holy Redeemer Church, led by Father Mark Thomas, he was laid to rest in Holy Redeemer Cemetery. A lengthy obituary was published in the Beaver County Times. Ursula survived her husband by a number of years and in 2020 was in Beaver Falls.
Daughter Velma Marie Kennedy (1952-2021) was born on Christmas Eve 1952. On Dec. 28, 1968, at age 16, she married 19-year-old Michael Joy "Mike" Adams (1949- ? ), son of Everlyn E. and Lillian (Dalton) Adams. Rev. J. Frank Peoples officiated. On their marriage application, they disclosed their color or race as "Colored." They lived in Philippi. Together, they bore three daughters -- Melissa Haddix, Melea Collins and Erin Mayle. Velma earned a living as an in-home service employee of Barbour County Senior Center. She was a member of Olive Hill Church and enjoyed going shopping. Sadly, at the age of 68, Velma died at home on June 24, 2021. Her remains were cremated, and her funeral service was preached by Pastor Ron Jones.
Daughter Cheryl Rae Kennedy (1955-2021) was born on June 8, 1955 in Barbour County. She never married and made her home for years with her father in Philippi until his death. She liked to attend Olive Hill Church and liked to spend time watching television. She then dwelled with her married sister Velma Adams in Philippi. Sadly, without warning, she died at the age of 65 on Feb. 22, 2021. Pastor Ron Jones officiated her funeral service, with interment following in Welch Cemetery.
Son Jeffrey Wayne "Jeff" Kennedy (1946-2020) was born on July 25, 1946 in Barbour County. At age 19, he wed a cousin, 16-year-old Luwana/Luwanda Jane Newman (1949- ? ), daughter of Wince and Icie (Mayle) Newman of the family of Elza Mayle. On their marriage license, they stated their color or race as "white." Rev. J. Franklin Peoples led the ceremony in Philippi on April 2, 1966. The Kennedys resided in Philippi and bore these offspring -- Lorrie Ann Croston, Misty Dawn Smithmyer Reynolds, Heather Mayle and Jeffrey Chad Kennedy. Jeffrey learned the trade of masonry and owned and operated his own contracting firm, Kennedy Construction. In his free time, he liked to fish, hunt and root for the Pittsburgh Steelers football team. He also was a founder and lay pastor of Olive Hill Church. The Clarksburg Exponent Telegram reported that Jeffrey "always cared about others and would make visits to the hospitals and nursing homes to check on members of the community. He enjoyed attending gospel sings, and loved eating sweets especially cakes from Bonnie Belle’s." Sadly, Jeffrey died unexpectedly at home on July 26, 2020 at the age of 74. The remains were cremated, and Pastor Bryan Headley preached the funeral sermon. An obituary in the Telegram said he was survived by nine grandchildren, two step-grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
~ Son Delbert Kennedy ~
Son Delbert Kennedy (1920-1981) was born on Oct. 12, 1919.
At the age of 26, on Feb. 18, 1945, he wed Helen Marie Mayle (1923- ? ). The ceremony was performed at Meriden, near Philippi, by Rev. M.C. Harris of the African Methodist Episcopal Church.
Helen was the daughter of Lloyd and Rosa Mayle, and brought a son to the marriage, Roy H. Mayle.
The Kennedys resided in Moatsville, Barbour County, and had five children of their own -- Sonny Lee Kennedy, Wilma Mayle, Shelia Rose Kennedy, Trevia Marie Kennedy and Wendy Lou Kennedy.
Delbert was "a retired construction worker, a veteran of World War II and a member of Olive Hill Methodist Church," said the Barbour Democrat.
Delbert passed away at age 61 on April 22, 1981. Rev. Kenny Reed and Rev. Winfield Mayle led the funeral, followed by burial at Welch Cemetery.
Step-grandson Roy H. "Pee Wee" Mayle ( ? - ? ) resided in Moatsville in the 1981-2008 era.
Son Sonny Lee Kennedy (1947-2007) was born on April 8, 1947. He made his home in Moatsville and later moved to Canton, Stark County, OH. He died on Oct. 6, 2007, at the age of 60.
Daughter Shelia Rose Kennedy ( ? - ? ) resided in Moatsville circa 1981.
Daughter Trevia Marie Kennedy ( ? - ? ) wed Sheldon Kennedy ( ? - ? ) and made their residence in 1981-2008 in Canton.
Daughter Wendy Lou Kennedy ( ? - ? ) was in Moatsville in 1981. By 2008, she had wed Barry Howard ( ? - ? ) and made their home in Conway, SC.
~ Son Gaston Kennedy ~
Son Gaston Kennedy (1923-1997) was born on May 30, 1924.
On Oct. 19, 1947, the 24-year-old Gaston married 22-year-old Garnet Ruth Poe (1925- ? ), daughter of William A. and Melvina (Mayle) Poe. Rev. M.C. Harris, of the African Methodist Church, officiated.
The Kennedys and Poes were close, as Gaston's brother Isaac married Garnet's sister Lillie.
Their children were Allen D. "Rock" Kennedy, Ronald "Butch" Kennedy and Flo Beeson.
They relocated to Koppel, Beaver County, PA, possibly to labor in railroad manufacturing or steelmaking operations there. He apparently moved back to Philippi circa 1984, but may have maintained connections to Beaver County.
Gaston passed away on May 27, 1997, at the age of 54.
Son Allen D. "Rock" Kennedy (1952-2017) was born on New Year's Eve 1952 in Beaver Falls. In about 1973, at age 21, he wedded Allie Price ( ? - ? ). Their children were Crystal Stoyanoff and Kimberly Stahl. Allen served in the U.S. Army. He was employed as a crane operator with IPSCO, a company making and fabricating steel. They dwelled in Koppel, Beaver County. Allen died at home at the age of 64 on Aug. 15, 2017. Interment was in Grandview Cemetery, following funeral services led by Rev. Lee Bittner.
~ Son Ralph Edward Kennedy ~
Son Ralph Edward Kennedy (1925-2009) was born on Sept. 3, 1925 in Moatsville, Barbour County.
At the age of 23, on Nov. 8, 1948, he married cousin Violine Croston (1928-2014), also spelled "Violene," daughter of Earl and Laura "Fez" (Mayle) Croston, and granddaughter of Frank Mayle. As with several weddings of Ralph's siblings, Rev. M.C. Harris of the African Methodist Church led the ceremony.
Ralph and Violine did not reproduce.
They moved to Canton, Stark County, OH and lived there circa 1981-1984. Later, they returned to Moatsville for good.
Sadly, Ralph died on Oct. 30, 2009, in Moatsville, at the age of 84.
Violine spent her final years in the Altercare of Nobles Pond Nursing Home. She died there at the age of 86 on May 6, 2014. Burial was in Welch Cemetery in Philippi.
~ Son Herbert "Hoover" Kennedy ~
Son Herbert "Hoover" Kennedy (1928-1999) was born in 1928 and was named after the president of the United States.
On Sept. 25, 1955, when he was age 27, Hoover married 19-year-old step-cousin Shelda Jane Kennedy (Nov. 16, 1936-2018), daughter of Carson and Leona (Norris) Kennedy of the family of Ruth Ann (Minerd) Mayle. They resided on Frost Run Road near Philippi. The couple did not reproduce but had one foster daughter, Shannon Michelle Bryant.
Hoover "was retired from the Maintenance Department of Alderson-Broaddus College and was a former employee of the National Iron & Metal in Canton," said a local newspaper. "He conscientiously attended a number of area churches but considered his home church to the the Pentecostal Church of Ford Run. He was known by his many friends for his open and friendly manner."
Hoover died at the age of 71 on Dec. 14, 1999, with burial at the Welch Cemetery following a funeral service conducted by Rev. Winfield Mayle.
Shelda Jane outlived her husband by more than 18 years. She "enjoyed reading, playing the electronic keyboard, singing and cooking, especially for others," recalled her family. "She was a giving and caring person who opened her home to others."
At the age of 81, Shelda Jane succumbed in United Hospital Center on April 27, 2018. Rev. Ezik Norris led the funeral service, with interment in Welch Cemetery.
Daughter Shannon Michelle Bryant ( ? -living) was born in (?). She married Henry Parker ( ? -living). They reside in San Antonio, TX and have two children -- Isaiah Parker and Alani Parker.
Copyright © 2004-2016, 2018-2023 Mark A. Miner