Thelma “Kitten” Neal Sharp died peacefully Friday, August 28, 2020, at the Bowers Hospice House in Beckley, after a prolonged illness.
Kitten was born in Ingram Branch, the youngest of three children of the late Dewey and Olna Kincaid.
She moved to Oak Hill where her father became Chief of Police. She attended Oak Hill High School where she met her future husband, Charles Warren Neal. She attended West Virginia Institute of Technology and later worked for the Bureau of Mines at the Mount Hope office.
Kitten married Charles Warren Neal and moved to Ansted, where they established “Honey Bear Farms,” well-known locally for strawberries and Polled Hereford cattle.
They had two children, Lee and Holly.
Kitten was happiest when entertaining others. Her beauty, bright smile and bubbly personality could light up any room. She loved making fudge, yeast breads, doughnuts and, of course, her Bourbon Balls were legendary. She enjoyed her Garden and Book Clubs, as well as the many horse and cattle shows, always supporting her husband and children in their endeavors.
Kitten touched many young lives during the years she worked as an elementary school teacher for the Fayette County School system. She was an easy favorite of the children and many still refer to her as “Miss Neal.”
After her teaching career came to a close, her effervescence made her a natural for her work as the Hostess and Dining Room Manager at Hawk’s Nest Lodge.
Charles Warren taught school until his accidental death in 1976.
Kitten married Dr. Roland Sharp of Pocahontas County in 1979 and moved to Frost. She enjoyed life as the wife of a rural physician and the many events at West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine, where Roland had been past president. In later years, as her health became fragile, she returned to Oak Hill.
Dr. Sharp preceded Kitten in death in 2013.
In addition to her parents and husbands, she was also preceded in death by two siblings, Morris Kincaid and Wandaleen Schallen.
Kitten is survived by her two children and their spouses, Lee and Francine Neal, of Gulf Breeze, Florida, and Holly and John Burley, of Ansted; in addition to her four grandchildren; five step-grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren.
The family would like to express their sincere and heartfelt gratitude to Kitten’s long-time caregivers, Barbara, Mae and John Kinley, of Oak Hill. They truly have been a blessing from God these past years.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be given to the Fisher Center for Alzheimer’s Research Foundation, FDR Station, P.O. Box 220, New York, NY 10150.