Kathleen ‘Kat’ Blankenship


Kathleen “Kat” Blankenship, 82, of Madisonville, departed this life peacefully on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023, surrounded by her loving family.

She was born on May 4, 1940, in Murphy, North Carolina, to the late Robert Ashe and Janie Harris.

Throughout her life, she enjoyed attending bluegrass festivals, going junking, hosting family gatherings, cooking, sewing and decorating.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded by her beloved husband, Charles Blankenship; children, Kenny Blankenship, Sherrie Harris and Kelly Webb; siblings, Bobby Ashe, Dennis Ashe, Darrell Byers, Jean Cross, Peggy Ashe, Peg Miller and Liz Mooney; and very special grandson, Coty Smith.

Left to cherish the many memories, include her beloved daughter, Donna Gibson; cherished grandchildren, Shauna Cronan, Charlie Blankenship, Deyonna Qualls, Wendy Moses, Ron Gill, Luke Webb and Logan Webb; sisters, Edithe Byers, Dovie Byers, Jewell Rayburn and Sheila Byers; and several great-grandchildren, great-great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews, cousins and a host of friends.

A Celebration of Life service will be conducted at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 19, 2023, in the chapel of Higgins Funeral Home of Benton with Pastor David Ashe officiating.

A private graveside service will be held on Friday at Delano Cemetery.

Family and friends will gather from 5 to 7 p.m. on Thursday prior to the service at the funeral home.

Expressions of sympathy may be shared with the family at



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