Mrs. Mary Ruth Miller Payne, better known as "Nana" to her family, passed away Monday morning, April 29,2019, at the age of 89 at Margate Health and Rehab Center.
Graveside services will be held on Thursday, May 2, 2019 at 3:00 pm at Ashelawn Memorial Gardens Cemetery with Rev.Michael Lea officiating and Mary's son, Marc Payne, speaking.
Mary was born in Alleghany County on July 11, 1929 to the late William Reece and Nettie Proffit Miller. She was a loving mother, sister and grandmother and will be missed by all.
Mary was preceded in death by her husband, Coleman Max Payne on July 20, 2015: four brothers, William (Willie) Miller, David Miller, Kent Miller and Edwin Miller.
She is survived by a son, Marc Payne and wife, Pam, of West Jefferson; two brothers, Dr. Gordon Miller and wife, Jean, of Wilkesboro and John Miller and wife, Angelia, of Sparta; a sister, Teresa DeVane and Husband, Lindsay, of Charleston, SC; two grandsons, Coleman Payne and Bryson Payne, both of West Jefferson; Extended family: Rocky Proffit and wife Tammy of Lake Norman; Rick Proffit and wife Diane of Laurel Springs; Brady Proffit and wife Mitzi of Sparta; Rita Proffit Wagoner and husband Greg of Sparta; several nieces and nephews also survive.
Service to others and to her community was a passion of Mary's. She served as a dedicated volunteer leader in the community for over 50 years, serving at many levels of organizations such as Delta Kappa Gamma, Eastern Star and the West Jefferson Woman's Club. She helped to improve her community in many ways through her work in support of conservation, education and literacy.
Mary spent over 30 years of her life teaching school and has spent countless hours of service in support of education. She began her teaching career at the fifth grade level at West Jefferson Elementary School, moving on to teach home economics at Beaver Creek High School and the Ashe County Career Center. She loved her students and would do anything for them. She taught life lessons that will never be forgotten and has a lasting impact on the lives and hearts of many.
Memorials honoring her life may be made to the West Jefferson Woman's Club - Mary Ruth Payne Scholarship Fund, 1400 Mount Jefferson Rd, Suite 7 #121, West Jefferson, NC 28694 or Medi Home Hospice, PO Box 421, Jefferson, NC 28640.