Mrs. Harriet “Susan” Zukoski Kirkland, 73, of Millry, AL passed from this life Saturday, May 9, 2020 at her residence surrounded by her loving family. She was born in Montgomery, AL on Monday, January 20, 1947 to Paul Oscar Zukoski and Eva Mae Hall Zukoski.
Being the daughter of a WWII veteran, Susan was born at Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery, AL. She was the beautiful namesake of her late grandmother, Harriet Susan McMullen Hall. Susan was the oldest of her sisters.
She was blessed with a husband who she adored (Oscar), two amazing children (Pat & Dawn), and even two bonus children (Sandra and Leonard). When her Grandson’s (Patrick & Brandon) were born, she became known as Big Momma and those grandsons were the true light of her world.
Susan fell in love with nursing at an incredibly young age, something she inherited from her Grandmother Harriet (Hattie or Big Momma) who was a nurse in the early 1900’s during WWI. Nursing was a dream that became Susan’s life!!! Susan started out as a candy striper at Saint Margaret’s Hospital in Montgomery, AL. Most of her skills were practiced on her sisters. From sponge baths to temperature checks, you name it and she did it. Susan took her job as a candy striper with great pride and ambition. She went on to get her Licensed Practical Nurse degree when she was in her late teens and began working at the Baptist Hospital in Montgomery, AL.
Upon meeting and marrying her husband (Oscar) in Montgomery, Susan moved to Buckatunna, MS to raise her young family. Buckatunna is a small town in the south that needed a nurse of tender yet aggressive skills. Susan was that nurse, a true Florence Nightingale in her own right. Nursing was her passion and she was always using her care-giving skills throughout her life as a friend, mother, and nurse in her community. Later in life, Susan went to college to become a Registered Nurse.
Throughout Susan’s career, she worked at the nursing home in Waynesboro, MS and worked in the ER, ICU and was even night shift supervisor for over 10 years at Wayne General Hospital. She retired from WGH in 2011. Susan was a brilliant nurse with skills that would take your breath away and was blessed with a unique talent in nursing. She was the pillar of strength for her family whenever there were any illnesses. But even after retirement, Susan was still the “NURSE”, forever taking care of the sick and wounded. Throughout Susan’s life, she has been a great inspiration to all her family, loved ones and so many others. Susan was also a member of the Order of the Eastern Star in Chatom, AL.
Mrs. Kirkland is preceded in death by her father, Paul Oscar Zukoski; mother, Eva Mae Hall Zukoski; husband, William Oscar Kirkland, Jr. She is survived by her children: son, Patrick Eugene Kirkland, I of Millry, AL, daughter, Dawn Kirkland Johnson (Stephen) of Millry, AL, daughter, Sandra Karen Phillips (Leo) of Verbena, AL, son, Leonard Randall Kirkland, Sr. (Janell) of Millry, AL; 2 sisters, Hope Stephanie Godwin (Kenny) of Winter Haven, FL, Paula Ann Morris of Lake Wales, FL; and a host of grandchildren, great-grandchildren, great-great grandchildren, nieces, and nephews.
Graveside Service for Mrs. Kirkland will be held at 3:00 PM Monday, May 11, 2020 at Flat Branch Cemetery in Millry, AL with Rev. Charles Allbrooks officiating. Interment will be in the Flat Branch Cemetery in Millry, AL.
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