David L. Kunkle

Published 10:00 am Thursday, September 15, 2011

June 18, 1941 – Sept. 13, 2011

NATCHEZ — Services for David L. “Dave” Kunkle, 70, of Natchez, who died Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2011, at Natchez Community Hospital surrounded by his devoted family, will be at 11 a.m. Friday at Natchez First Baptist Church with the Rev. Doug Broome officiating.

Burial will follow at Natchez City Cemetery under the direction of Laird Funeral Home.

Visitation will be from 5 to 7 p.m. today and from 10 a.m. until service time Friday at the church.

Mr. Kunkle was born June 18, 1941, in Angola, Ind. He was reared on a farm, attended Hamilton, Ind. public schools, was salutatorian of his 1959 high school graduating class and was runner-up as the STAR Hoosier Farmer in 1959.

He was a graduate of Perdue University in Lafayette, Ind. with a bachelor of sciences in Agricultural Economics in 1963.

Mr. Kunkle was a licensed real estate broker in Louisiana, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Texas and a member of the National Institute of Farm and Land Brokers, the American Society of Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers, Metropolitan Board of Realtors, a mason and member of First Baptist Church of Natchez since 1978.

Early in his career Dave was employed as a professional farm and ranch manager, real estate appraiser and salesman with Doane Ag Services where he managed 35 farms and ranches in Missouri, Oklahoma and Arkansas totaling more than 19,000 acres. In the early 1970s he moved to Louisiana, purchased farm land and was a very successful farmer, growing soybeans, rice and corn. There was nothing better Dave enjoyed more than “making a deal.” He would eventually organize and mastermind the building of Kunkle Seed Company which grew into a thriving business for 20 years. He was well known throughout the Miss-Lou, and carried many farmers and helped them during “lean years,” by his caring and generous spirit. In May 2000, the Kunkle Seed Company was sold, but not ready for retirement, he and his son, David Edward, drove the “big rigs” from the year 2000 until present all across the southeast and parts beyond.

Mr. Kunkle was preceded in death by his father, Don Kunkle.

Survivors include his loving wife of 38 years, Charlotte; five children, David Edward Kunkle and wife, Donna, of Ferriday, Charlynn Kunkle Griffin and husband, Clay, of McCall Creek, Phillip Kunkle of Natchez, Karen Hightower and husband, Gary, of Midland, Texas, and Steve Pugh of Spokane, Wash.; his mother, Laurene Kunkle of Ind.; two sisters, Judy Manahan and Beverly Knox, both of Angola, Ind.; one brother, Ken Kunkle of Vidalia; eight grandchildren, one great-grandchild; and a number of nieces, nephews and countless friends who ministered to his family during his recent illness.

Special thanks to the members of the Wil Nolan Sunday School Class of First Baptist Church that lovingly and faithfully ministered to the Kunkle Family during this difficult journey in their lives. He will be missed and loved always!

Pallbearers will be Willard Kassel, Wil Nolan, Gene Perkins, Lee Thomas, Charles Stephens and Tim Welch.

Honorary pallbearers will be men of the Co-Ed Sunday School Class that Dave and Charlotte were members of for 33 years.

Memorials may be made to Natchez First Baptist Church, the Gideon Bible Association, or a charity of choice.

Online condolences may be sent to www.lairdfh.com.