Benjamin Upchurch Kittrell Sr., former director of the Pee Dee Research and Education Center in Florence, died July 27, 2020, after a long battle with dementia.
He retired from Clemson in 2002 after 24 years as an agronomist and tobacco specialist before guiding the Pee Dee REC through a time of tremendous change, implementing many improvements to the station.
Kittrell grew up on a tobacco farm in North Carolina and earned the first of three degrees in agriculture in 1960 from North Carolina State University. Working full time as a tobacco specialist with the North Carolina Agriculture Extension Service while he continued his education, he earned a doctorate in 1975 and worked as an extension service soybean specialist for the University of Georgia in Athens before coming to Clemson.
He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Nancy Louise Lassiter Kittrell, son Benjamin Upchurch Kittrell Jr. (Millie), daughter Jan Kittrell Howell (Al) and three grandchildren.
The funeral was held July 31 in Florence. His full obituary is posted online.