Steve Sheppard Photography Blog

One Funeral and Many Reunions

with 8 comments

(Front L-R) Ed Ramsey, Sean Quinlan and Stu Laird. (Back L-R) Steve Sheppard, John Ashworth, Dave Tesh, Marshall Posey, Scott Lee and Chip Wingfield.

I just got back in Martinsville from Kirby Porter’s funeral in Mechanicsville, Va.

Kirby was our Pi Kappa Phi Fraternity brother, our Archon (President) and our friend.

I say our, because nine of Kirby’s Pi Kapp brothers came to the funeral. Being our Archon he brought us together on many occasions. Almost all of them were happy ones, until today.

Some of us have not see each other for the past 27 years. Some live just down the street from each other and get together occasionally. Facebook, however, has been our connection for a while. Attending the funeral were John Ashworth, Scott Lee, Ed Ramsey, Dave Tesh, Stu Laird with his lovely wife Kim, Marshall Posey, Chip Wingfield, Sean Quinlan and Mattie and I. John is my big brother and Scott is my little brother in the fraternity. It was also nice to spend a little time with Kirby’s sister Margo.

Ed was asked to speak at the funeral and did an outstanding job of telling stories and expressing love, we all share, for our brother.

During the service, I kept flashing back to our days in Pi Kappa Phi at Radford University. There were many thoughts of our fraternity days and the laughs we had. We shared a pew today and as I looked down the row it was as if it was 1981. Yea, there might have been a little less hair, and most all of it had changed color (Chip, what’s the deal. You still have dark hair). Other than that, no one had really changed. It was the same bunch I know and love. There we were a group of brothers again.

However, I kept getting jolted back to the reality of the day.

We felt we could not go home without spending a little more time together so we found a place to sit and talk. We laughed as we all pulled out our reading glasses to see the menu. Then, we raised a glass to our brother.

We told stories, laughed and shared our experiences with Kirby and each other. Our conversation picked up where it was left so many years ago. It was as if nearly three decades had not passed.

For all the brothers who were unable to attend, your name probably came up in conversation. We kept throwing out names and, for most everyone, there was someone there who knew what became of each brother and our little sisters in the fraternity.

We discussed getting together each year the third week in July and about other times we could meet.

Kirby, you brought us together again and, this time, I believe we will not wait years to see each other. Rest In Peace, our brother.


Written by stevesheppardphotography

July 22, 2010 at 10:54 pm

Posted in My personal stuff

8 Responses

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  1. Steve,

    As always, great writing. It was great to see everyone and I am really glad that you and I got to see each other again after so many years. You’re right, it didn’t seem like almost 30 years has passed. See you soon

    John Ashworth

    July 23, 2010 at 8:31 am

  2. Thanks John,
    It was great to have the opportunity to spent some time together. We will get together again soon.


    July 23, 2010 at 9:48 am

  3. Great looking group of men. Sorry for your loss, Steve. Nice tribute


    July 23, 2010 at 9:51 am

  4. Steve, your words are a great tribute and although I did not know Kirby personally, I can imagine that he was like many of you I had the pleasure of meeting yesterday. As a defense attorney, I can tell you that there is not one lawyer in this state that has not heard of the efforts Kirby went to on the famous case that set an innocent man free. Steve please tell your wife i really enjoyed meeting her too–she is a very warm and down to earth lady, like someone I would have been friends with very easily, and hope to see again soon. You are all welcome in our home anytime, so let us know when any of you are in the area!


    July 23, 2010 at 10:37 am

  5. Patrice,
    Thank you. Also, I am so sorry about your recent fire. I wish you the best.


    July 23, 2010 at 12:37 pm

  6. Kim,
    It was great meeting you too, and I will pass this along to Mattie. Please come to see us whenever you can. I hope we can all get together soon.


    July 23, 2010 at 12:40 pm

  7. That was great Steve! The 3rd weekend in July sounds like a good idea to do something in Richmond. Sorry I missed it.

    Paul Hightower

    July 23, 2010 at 3:08 pm

  8. Good seeing you all!!
    Thanks for the pic.

    Sean Quinlan

    August 30, 2010 at 8:32 pm

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