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 Cassius Sullivan

Cassius Sullivan

Adair County, Kentucky, USA
Death 17 Jul 1958 (aged 56)
Christine, Adair County, Kentucky, USA
Burial Adair County, Kentucky, USA
Memorial ID 18942271 · View Source
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Cassius Sullivan was the son of William and Martha Jane (Womack) Sullivan (who are both buried at Bethlehem Cemetery in Royville). He was first married to Balla Polston on August 12, 1924. She died in 1940. On December 8, 1942 he married Letha Bell Collins. She is still living.

Cassius was my grandfather, but he died two months before I turned two-years-old. I have absolutely no memories of him. I only know stories I was told over the years. And I really don't remember them all too well.

Shortly after he and Balla married, they moved to Cincinnati. It could be that one of them was living there already. I only know for sure that they were living there when my dad was born the next February. And they were still there in 1930 when the census was taken. His occupation was listed as a scaler at a packing house. My aunt was able to tell me that the packing house was Krogers. My grandmother was a school teacher.

During the time they lived in Cincinnati, my uncle Roy was born, but Balla returned to Kentucky to give birth. I'm not sure why, but it could be that she simply wanted to be with family for this birth.

I've also been told various reasons why my grandparents returned to Kentucky. I know for sure that they had returned and were living there when my uncle Earl was born in 1933.

The reasons I've been given were:

1) that Cassius lost his job because of the depression and had to return to Kentucky to make a living,
2) that my grandmother was sick from tuberculosis and simply needed to be around more family for help, (she did die from the complications of TB in 1940)
3) that Cassius' parents died (they did; his mother in April 1930 and his father in December 1930) and that he inherited the farm.

I don't know if any or all of them are true. I just know that they returned.

Life was hard during those years when they moved back. Of course, life was hard everywhere because of the depression. But life was really hard for them because of my grandmother's declining health. My dad had to quit school after the 4th grade, something he always regretted and something I'm sure his school teacher mother hated to have happen. During those years my dad became an excellent cook and ended up serving as a cook during his years in the service.

My grandmother died in October 1940 leaving five children without a mother. Uncle Gib was born in 1936. Aunt Fern, the youngest, was born in 1938 and was two years old when Balla died. The oldest, my dad, was 15. A lot fell on his shoulders during those coming years.

My grandfather remarried in December 1942 and my dad moved out. He joined the service the following April.

From there, I know there were conflicts between my dad and his father. And they were really not resolved when my grandfather passed away in 1958.

Also during those years between 1942 and 1958, he and Letha had five children. One died just 2 days short of being 2 months old. Another was stillborn. But three of them, Geneva, Terrill and Rodger eventually moved to the same area where my parents moved in the 1950s.

His obituary from the July 23, 1958 Adair County News:

Cassius Sullivan, 56, Dies Thursday Near His Home

Cassius Sullivan, 56, died on Thursday, July 17, near his home in the Grassey Springs community of Adair County. A farmer and cement construction foreman, he was the son of the late William and Jane Womack Sullivan. He is survived by his wife, Mrs. Letha Collins Sullivan; two daughters, Miss Geneva Sullivan of Adair County, and Miss Fern Sullivan of Indiana; six sons, Terrell and Roger [should be Rodger] Sullivan of Adair County and Huston, Roy, Earl and Gilbert Sullivan of Indiana; one stepson, Jimmy Collins of Adair County; and five sisters, Mrs. Joann Bryant, Sano, Mrs. Rhina Burton, Mrs. Nora Skaggs and Mrs. Nancy Alley, [all of] Russell Springs, and Mrs. Velera [should be Valeria] Hale, Tulsa, Oklahoma. Rev. H. C. Moxley, Rev. Otis Wolford, Rev. Orville Overstreet and Rev. Bloyd conducted the funeral services on Sunday, July 20, at the Royville Friendship Church in Russell County. Interment was in the Freedom Cemetery in Adair County. Funeral arrangements were by Grissom-Maupin & Heskamp Funeral Home. Carlie Bryant, Marvin Bryant, Lora Alley, Davis Higgenbottom, Elbert McGaha and Ruff Bryant were pallbearers.

Special thanks to Karla for sponsoring my grandfather's memorial.

Bio by: J.Sullivan


Married Dec. 8, 1942
God Gave, He Took, He Will Restore, He Doeth All Things Well

See more Sullivan memorials in:

  • Created by: J.Sullivan
  • Added: 15 Apr 2007
  • Find A Grave Memorial 18942271
  • Karla Tschannen
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Cassius Sullivan (3 Aug 1901–17 Jul 1958), Find A Grave Memorial no. 18942271, citing Freedom Cemetery, Adair County, Kentucky, USA ; Maintained by J.Sullivan (contributor 46827102) .