809 La Clede Street, Bellmead, TX 76705

Frances Jean Kelley Ryther
January 11, 1928 - December 11, 2022

Frances Jean Kelley Ryther

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Frances Jean Kelley Ryther was born January 11, 1928, to William and Lula Dean Rhodes Kelley in Yoakum, Texas. Jean graduated from Gonzales High School, then from the University of Houston in 1951. She taught in Bay City, Texas for the 1951 - 1952 school year.
Jean married Carl Felix Ryther November 30, 1951, at her home in Gonzales County. The Texas girl met the South Dakota boy while he was serving in the U.S. Air Force stationed in Houston, and began a life together filled with adventure. Together they traveled with the Air Force to California and Germany. After the military service they settled in South Dakota - another adventure (a little cold for the Texas girl!). Jean worked to care for home and their growing family.
In 1962 the family of six flew to East Pakistan (now Bangladesh) where Jean and Carl served as missionaries for 17 years. Jean learned a new language and how to live in a new culture. She home schooled her children, organized her home, and prepared many meals for visitors passing through. Jean dedicated her skills and time to helping widows and their children provide for themselves with community vegetable gardens, ducks, and fish in the pond.
In 1979 Jean, Carl and son Tim moved to Texas and made their home in Waco. Jean and Carl helped establish the World Hunger Relief (WHRI) farm in Waco; a farm with a mission of helping develop and teach the techniques and knowledge that communities both globally and locally need to grow their own food. During the early years Jean prepared many meals for interns, volunteers, supporters, and curious guests who came to marvel at what WHRI was doing to help alleviate hunger.
Jean was a member of Seventh and James Baptist church where she appreciated Bible studies and fellowship. She coordinated and cooked for the Meals on Wheels program. She worked as a Library Assistant at the Baylor University library where she developed wonderful friendships and was surrounded by books - a lifelong love.
After she was widowed, in 1999, Jean enjoyed special times with her sisters and youngest brother, visiting family in Texas and Canada and researching their family history.
Jean was preceded in death by her parents, her husband Carl; son Gary; brothers William (Bubba) Kelley, James (Toby) Kelley and sisters Novella Patterson and Janette Parrott.
She is survived by children Carla VanderZaag (Peter), Joel Ryther and Tim Ryther; brother Steen Kelley; six grandchildren: Andy (Rhonda), Jeanan (Kenny), Ruth (Nick), Oscar, Olivier, Odile; five greatgrandchildren; sisters-in-law Grace McElroy and Velma Becker (Elwin); brother-in-law Bob Ryther (Marva); many nieces and nephews.
The family thanks the community of kind ''angels'' at Royal Manor, Hewitt who have gone out of their way to give comfort and care to our mother.
A graveside service will be held at 1:00 pm Monday, December 19, 2022 at Ebenezer Cemetery, Gonzales, Texas.
Memorials may be made to: World Hunger Relief, Inc. (worldhungerrelief.org)

Sunday, December 18, 2022
3:00 pm to 5:00 pm
Bellmead Funeral Home
809 La Clede Street
Bellmead, TX  76705
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Monday, December 19, 2022
1:00 pm
Ebenezer Cemetery
Gonzales, TX  77963
Ebenezer Cemetery
Gonzales, TX  77963


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