Ronald Martin Kimzey

ronald kimzey

May 31, 1942 ~ April 9, 2023

Born in: Asheville, NC
Resided in: Mills River, NC

Ron Kimzey, 80, of Houston, TX, and Mills River, NC, died peacefully on Easter Sunday, April 9, 2023, at his residence in Mills River surrounded by loved ones and after seeing all his children and grandchildren in his final weeks. Ron was born in Asheville, NC, on May 31, 1942, to the late Alexander Martin Kimzey, Jr., and Lorraine Buckner Kimzey.

After graduating from Lee H. Edwards High School in Asheville in 1960, he went onto the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was a member of Alpha Tau Omega fraternity and the freshman honorary fraternity Phi Eta Sigma. Following graduation in 1964, Ron attended Harvard University, where he earned his Masters in Business Administration. The friendships forged during his years in Chapel Hill and Harvard remained a cherished bond.

After a brief stint in the US Army Corps in 1967, Ron was hired by Cameron Iron Works and moved to Houston, TX. In January 1970, Cameron sent Ron to Edinburgh, Scotland, to serve as controller of European operations. Ron and his wife, Barbara, spent three years enjoying the expat lifestyle and traveling the world before returning to Houston to start a family and continue working for Cameron. Like those from his younger years, the relationships he developed during his time with Cameron proved long-lasting.

In 1980, Ron retired for the first time so he could spend more time with his young family. In a nod to his childhood spent camping with his family in the hills of NC, he bought a camper and loaded up the family, and they traveled the country. Ron and his children also loved hunting and fishing, especially at their Texas hill country deer lease. In 1981, the late Don Crawford lured Ron out of retirement to help run his various businesses and finances. Through this work, Ron made more fond and colorful memories with his family in TX at Crawford Farms, Rockport, and South Padre Island.

Following final retirement in 2012, Ron spent his time visiting his children and grandchildren in TX, VA, and CO, managing his real estate properties, and visiting his brother, Bill, in Mills River. In 2018, after calling Texas home for more than 45 years, he returned to his family’s roots on Kimzey Road in Mills River.

He was preceded in death by his parents, as well as his brother William B. Kimzey, who died in 2018. He is survived by his former wife of twenty-six years, Barbara Hill Kimzey, and their three children, W. Bryan Kimzey and his wife, Elizabeth, of Houston, TX; Trevor M. Kimzey and his wife, Tracy, of Blacksburg, VA; and Alyson Kimzey Scott and her husband, Ward, of Denver, CO; as well as ten grandchildren in TX and VA.

His children wish to express their deep gratitude to Gwen Cradle of Mills River for her kindness and compassion in personally caring for their father during his final years.

A memorial service will be held at 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 15th, at Mills River Presbyterian Church.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made in Ron Kimzey’s memory to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Foundation,, or Safelight, Inc., of Hendersonville, NC,

Groce Funeral Home’s Lake Julian team is assisting the family.


Memorial Service: April 15, 2023 3:00 pm

Mills River Presbyterian Church
10 Presbyterian Church Road
Horse Shoe, NC 28742


Funeral Home Assisting The Family:

Groce Funeral Home at Lake Julian
72 Long Shoals Road
Arden, NC 28704


Army Veteran

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Memories Timeline


  1. Barbara, Bryan, Trevor and Alyson,
    He was my boss, my mentor and my friend. He was directly and indirectly responsible for my joy as a husband and as a father. He was directly involved in my success in business both when I worked for him and after he retired. In both regards, I will be forever grateful.
    I will always remember the warmth and happiness of my many visits to your home on Hibury, particularly when I was a young bachelor just beginning to find my way in a new city. Sometimes on holidays like Halloween and Christmas. Sometimes for no particular reason other than getting together and helping me move forward.
    I think of him and the four of you often and always with warmth and affection.
    I tell many friends about the things he did for me during our time together at Cameron and they are always amazed and impressed by his generosity and caring spirit. Needless to say, I will always remember that.
    I was glad to be able to reconnect with him during these last few years and to be able to tell him that I loved him and appreciated what he did for me and my family. I know that you miss him and Addie and I will always miss him as well.
    I am sorry that my own physical challenges preclude our getting up there for the memorial service. Please know that we will be thinking about him and you and that we will be holding him and all of you in our hearts forever.
    Chris and Addie Christensen

    • Barbara,Bryan,Trevor and Alyson my thoughts and prayers are with all of you.
      I pray your treasured memories will comfort each of you.I am so very grateful Ron was part of my life and that I was able to visit with him a few months back. He was still telling me to behave and save my money!! And he still had a twinkle in his eyes !! Don Crawford was blessed have Ron – as we all were.

  2. I am Ronnie’s cousin and I am very proud of him. He was special. He has great children. I am looking forward to seeing all his grandchildren on Saturday. He is now in God’s hands. Prayers and love to all of you. Joanne Carter Gunter

  3. I knew Ron in high school. A super nice guy! Not surprised he became a successful businessman and great father! My condolences. Tom Stevens Durham, NC

  4. Ronnie was a classmate at Lee Edwards. He would sleep through English class and still make A’s. A smart guy who was a joy to be with. He lived a exciting and a successful life. My condolences to his family. Joyce Warren Zimmerman, Wilmington, NC

  5. I worked with Ron when he first came to Cameron Iron Works as a young college graduate. He was a joy to work for and we learned so much together about producing financial statements.

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