Cora Kathleen (Ballard) Simpkins

- March 14, 2024

Cora Kathleen (Ballard) Simpkins, of Blacksburg, passed away on March 14, 2024 at the age of 96. She was born to Roland Ballard and Mabel (Copeland) Ballard on November 26, 1927 in Monroe County, West Virginia. Cora was preceded in death by her husband, Ralph Simpkins, infant son Charles Simpkins, her grandson Michael Perry, and her six brothers: Paul, Thomas, Dewey, John, an infant brother, and Homer Ballard. She is survived by her daughter Hilda (Simpkins) Roberts of Blacksburg, her son-in-law Tal Roberts of Christiansburg, her grandson David Perry, his wife, Kelly, their two sons, Kevin and Seth Perry of Roanoke, and Jonathan Roberts and his fiancé Kristin McCord of Christiansburg, her sister Elizabeth (Ballard) Hall of Union, West Virginia , and her sister-in-law Madilyn Ballard of Greenville, West Virginia. She also leaves behind many cherished nieces, nephews, and their children. She was known as Cora to those she worked with for many years at Poly-Scientific in Blacksburg. Her grandsons and great-grandsons called her “Granny”, or simply “G”, and others knew her as Kathleen. She graduated from Union High School in West Virginia and then married Ralph Simpkins in 1947, after his service in the Navy during World War II. She was a longtime member of Rock Camp Missionary Baptist Church and attended services for many years at Northside Presbyterian Church in Blacksburg. Kathleen enjoyed visiting with her many friends and family in West Virginia and at her home in Blacksburg. She enjoyed tending her flowers, feeding the birds, and loved cooking for anyone and everyone–especially around the holidays. She spent her time learning about West Virginia history and geography, scarcely forgot a birthday or anniversary, and had an encyclopedic knowledge of the genealogy of both her and Ralph’s families. She kept everything, except what she didn’t. Kathleen will be laid to rest beside her husband Ralph at the Ellison Cemetery in Rock Camp, West Virginia on Monday, March 18, 2024, at 11:00 am. The graveside service will be officiated by Pastor Paul Broyles, Sr., of the Rock Camp Missionary Baptist Church. Fellowship will follow at the church–21 Old School Rd., Lindside, WV 24951. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the church’s building fund.