“Coach” Mack Kirkland, a resident of Dothan, Alabama, passed away Saturday, March 13, 2021. He was 81 years old.
Celebration of Life services will be held at 11 AM Tuesday, March 16, 2021 at Ridgecrest Baptist Church with Pastor Ray Jones and Brother Tim Willis officiating. Burial will follow in Memory Hill cemetery. The family will receive friends from 9:30 AM until 10:45 AM prior to the services at the church. Flowers will be accepted, or memorial contributions may be made to; Ridgecrest Baptist Church Music Fund, 1231 Fortner Street, Dothan, AL 36301. Serving as pallbearers will be Harry Wayne Parrish, Wayne LeCroy, David Trawick, Jimmy Berkowich, Richard Murphy, and Ron Moates.
Coach Kirkland was born in Houston County, Alabama to the late Cecil and Irene Bullock Kirkland. Coach Kirkland graduated from Houston County High School and attended Chipola Junior College and Auburn University on basketball scholarships. After earning his Bachelors and Masters in Education from Auburn, he began his career as a teacher and basketball coach serving at Rehobeth, Headland, Opp, Dothan and Northview High Schools for the next 39 years. After a successful and highly decorated coaching career he was inducted into the Wiregrass Sports Hall of Fame in 2004. Early in his career, he was introduced to Rebecca McCraney and he would often say that he knew she was the one after she cooked an elaborate meal for him early into their courtship. They were married four months later and enjoyed 56 years of marriage. Coach Kirkland was a faithful member of Ridgecrest Baptist church and an avid golfer. As an educator, he was a role model for his students and invested in their growth and success. As the family patriarch, he lived out daily how a husband, father and grandfather should serve God and his family. “Daddy Mack” was a staple at his grandchildren’s extracurricular events and a consistent source of support and encouragement. He will be remembered as a devoted, driven, selfless and kind-hearted man who was a positive influence in the lives of anyone that was blessed to know him.
Mack is preceded in death by his parents, brother Doyle Kirkland; sisters Nancy Keel and Gayle Walker and a daughter in law, Suzette Kirkland.
Survivors include his wife, Rebecca McCraney Kirkland; sons, Jason Kirkland and Jeffrey and Lydia Kirkland; three grandchildren, Davis, Jansen and Bennett Kirkland; several beloved nieces and nephews.
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