Ruth Coates Keel obituary photo
 
In Memory of

Ruth Coates Keel

May 6, 1922 - May 16, 2017

Obituary


Ruth was the firstborn child of James Baston and Mollie Coates of McColl, SC on May 6, 1922. After attending school in Dillon County, she went to work in a local textile mill.
After meeting on a blind date and within 24 hours of being introduced, Ruth married Paul Keel on July 5, 1942 in Dillon, SC. They remained married until Paul's death in 1987 (45 years.)
Paul and Ruth were the parents of 4 children. In 1956, they lost their beloved infant daughter, Linda Elaine, who was 5 months old. Their son, Paul Hardy,...

Ruth was the firstborn child of James Baston and Mollie Coates of McColl, SC on May 6, 1922. After attending school in Dillon County, she went to work in a local textile mill.
After meeting on a blind date and within 24 hours of being introduced, Ruth married Paul Keel on July 5, 1942 in Dillon, SC. They remained married until Paul's death in 1987 (45 years.)
Paul and Ruth were the parents of 4 children. In 1956, they lost their beloved infant daughter, Linda Elaine, who was 5 months old. Their son, Paul Hardy, passed-on in 1995 at the tragic age of 47. Ruth was also predeceased by her parents and five younger siblings, Tilghman, Lib, Catherine, Rachel and Charles.
In addition to her two daughters, Betty Jo Sellers of Leland, NC and Oahu, HI, and Jean Giguere of Las Vegas, NV, Ruth leaves behind one younger sister, Maxine Fletcher, of Grand Junction, CO. Also left behind are her sisters-in-law Virginia Coates of Dillon, SC and Mildred Womble of Chatham, NC, was her life-long best friend. Her prodigy consists of 17 grand children, 9 great-grandchildren, 4 great great grandchildren, numerous nieces and nephews and several cousins.
During her lifetime, Ruth lived variously in South Carolina, Washington, D.C., Maryland, Pennsylvania, Arizona and North Carolina, She lived in Leland for the last 30 years of her life.
Ruth's past employment included Sealtest Corporation, the International Union of Bricklayers, Masons and Plasterers and Kresge Corporation. She retired from K-Mart here in Wilmington where she was a Greeter and Security Officer.
Ruth was a member of the Ladies Auxiliary and volunteered at New Hanover Hospital for a period of time. She was the recipient of several Outstanding Achievement Awards for her church work, and also earned certificates of completion for a number of continuing education classes.
An avid traveler, Ruth was privileged to visit many noted national and historical landmarks, and in 1977 the Keel's renewed their marriage vows in a very special ceremony in Oahu, Hawaii.
Ruth was an accomplished singer, musician and song writer.
In addition to piano, she played the 12-string guitar, banjo and other string instruments. She organized and led the Oaklawn Church of God's Childrens Choir during church services, special events and as special guests at outside venues. In the early 1960's she organized and directed the very first Living Christmas Tree Cantata in Prince Georges County, Maryland.
Ruth will be forever mourned and thought of with love by those who knew her.
A memorial Service will be held at 2pm on Saturday May 27, 2017 at Coble Ward-Smith Funeral Home Chapel. Interment will follow at Greenlawn Memorial Park.