Kurt O’Connor McCord
Kurt O’Connor McCord, 40, of Olney, died Sept. 6, 2016, at United Regional Hospital in Wichita Falls. A memorial service was held at 1 p.m. Monday, Sept. 12, at the First Baptist Church in Haskell with Rev. Jesse Erhart of Olney officiating and Kristi Stewart, assisting. Kurt will be buried next to his brother in Willow Cemetery. All services are under the direction of Smith Family Funeral Homes of Haskell.
Visitation was held from 4-5 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 11, at the First Baptist Church, 301 N. Ave. E.
Born in Wichita Falls on Sept. 5, 1976, Kurt was the oldest son of Andy and Christye Gannaway of Haskell and Dusty McCord of Round Rock.
He graduated from Haskell High School in 1995 and from Texas Tech University with a bachelor of arts degree in English and a minor in communications. He was a certified forensic interviewer (CFI) and a certified member of the International Association of Interviewers (IAI).
Kurt had worked for Target as an investigations technician for Organized Retail Crime (ORC) and Internal Theft Investigations, and also served as an executive team leader of asset protection. He then worked as a loss prevention supervisor at Burlington Coat Factory before becoming a corporate investigations supervisor for 7-Eleven, Inc.
Kurt received honors and recognition for his outstanding efforts in combating organized retail crime. He built strong partnerships with law enforcement at local, state and federal levels, including the Secret Service, to investigate and prosecute cases. A champion of the underdog, his exposure of alleged questionable business practices by corporate giant 7-Eleven made the national news, drawing the attention of the New York Times, LA Times and other media outlets.
A talented musician, entertainer and writer, Kurt played guitar, composed music and wrote lyrics for original compositions. Words were a gift for him, and after he left investigative work, he turned to creative writing, journalism and newspaper publishing. Currently, he was editor and publisher of the Olney Advocate newspaper in Olney.
In high school, he lettered in football, tennis and ran cross country and track. He played in the band and belonged to the H-Club and FFA, participated in UIL poetry and earned cast honors for One Act Play competitions. His senior class voted him best dressed. He worked part time at Sport About where the owner said customer service was Kurt’s specialty.
An Army veteran and a loyal Chicago Cub’s fan, Kurt’s mega-watt smile and outgoing personality earned him friends wherever he went. An unabashed Democrat, he followed politics faithfully. Blessed with tremendous talents, he often used them to document the life and times of growing up and living in small towns, to promote organ donations and to right wrongs. He also celebrated his brother’s life through his music, newspaper columns and articles. Like his brother, Kurt, too, was an organ donor.
He is survived by two sons, Cash and Cannon McCord of Corinth; his parents; one sister, Alexandra Baker and husband Bonner of Austin; maternal grandmother, Joyce Greenwood of Goree; paternal grandmother, Mary Lou McCord of Seymour; former wife, Amy McCord and stepdaughters, Cassi and Katy Crain of Corinth, and numerous uncles, aunts, cousins and friends.
Kurt was preceded in death by his brother, Matthew McCord; his maternal grandfather, T.W. Greenwood; his paternal grandfather, Fred McCord, and his grandmother-in-love, Lucile Gannaway.
Cousins will serve as pallbearers. Memorials may be made to Southwest Transplant Alliance, 5489 Blair Road, Dallas, TX 75231; The Refuge, 1418 W. Elm St., Olney, TX 76374, or to a charity of one’s choice.