Mary Ruth Chandler, 85, of Bloomington, passed away Wednesday, November 24, 2010 at her residence. Born, August 15, 1925 in St. Clair County Missouri, she was the daughter of Cole B. and Ella M. (Baumgarden) Kelley.
Survivors include her husband, Elmer Chandler Jr., two sons, James Allen Griffith (Gina) of Colorado Springs, CO, Roger Cole Griffith (Kathy) of Kansas City, MO, two granddaughters that she raised as her own, Kelley Ann Griffith Wardzala (David Wardzala) of Canton MI, Stacey Ann Griffith Emley (Dr. Tyler Emley) of Merrellville, IN, a cherished “ought to be granddaughter” Kristian Perisho of Terre Haute, several grandchildren, several great-grandchildren, two brothers, Charles William Kelley (Zelda) of Clearwater, FL, Dillard Leo Kelley (Zeda) of Humansville, MO, two special friends, Linda C. Robertson of Bloomington and Georgina Allcron of Springville.
Granny passed the day before Thanksgiving and we are thankful for the life and love she gave. The love between her and her husband Elmer allowed for many to witness a true marriage. Elmer nursed her until the end where she was surrounded by friends and family. Their love endures. Her love was at the same time fierce and practical. That trait was evident in everything that she did even as a young girl when she sang or recited for audiences. She raised three boys one being deaf which we understood never to see as a handicap. Granny’s granddaughters have a similar outlook as they continue to live their lives with the lessons and fun she lived. All of her children were raised to know justice as one son is an accomplished teacher and worked in law enforcement and her youngest son is a retired soldier that fought in the Gulf war.
She was tiny but mighty and we are blessed with stories of how she dazzled everywhere she went. She was daring in ways that her sized would never indicate. She took on the challenge at 50 of raising twin granddaughters from the age of three. Her practical and instructive wit made life fun while she worked very hard to keep her home a safe haven for all who entered. Her strength and love is evident in everyone the she and Elmer touched. She was a shelter for many of Stacey and Kelley’s friends always including them in her fold. Mary’s pride and our pride is everywhere as we all go forward into our daily lives. She will remain a blessing to this earth until it’s last turn. Mary was preceded in death by her son, Zane Kelley Griffith (2007), two sisters, Cleota Vernice Cox and Willa Dean Lighter.