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Mell WhippleSeptember 20, 1911 ~ August 13, 2017 (age 105)
Camella (Mell) Rycroft Gates Whipple passed away on August 13, 2017 at the age of 105. She was born on September 20, 1911 in Mount Vernon, Georgia to the late Albert Martin Gates and Annette Rycroft Gates.
She spent her early childhood in Twiggs Co., Georgia before her family returned to Mount Vernon when she was ten. She completed the sixth grade through junior college at Brewton Parker and graduated from Bessie Tift College.
Mell was a retired teacher/librarian. She taught in Uvalda and in Vidalia for several years before her marriage to her sweetheart since sixth grade, the late Dr. Oliver Coleman Whipple. After a number of years, Mell returned to teaching in Lyons and Vidalia, retiring from the Vidalia School System. After retirement she was librarian at Robert Toombs Christian Academy for several years.
Mell was devoted to her immediate and extended family. She took great pride in her former students as she watched them develop into responsible, caring adults.
Many years ago, Mell chose to try to follow, as the standard for her life, the teachings set forth in Micah 6:8 that what the Lord requires of us is "to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God". Mission accomplished, good and faithful servant.
In addition to her parents and husband, Mell was preceded in death by her sisters, Mary DeJarnette and Edith Smith, and her brother, Albert Martin Gates, Jr.
Her survivors include her daughter, Annette Whipple Ewing, her two granddaughters, Anne Ewing Rood and Camella Ewing Duerr (Don), two great-granddaughters, Charlotte Rood and Ila Duerr as well as beloved nieces and nephews, Dr. Bob DeJarnette, Ellen Whipple Bankston, Oliver Whipple, Frances Deal, Bill Smith, and Peggy Gates.
A celebration of life funeral service will be held Wednesday, August 16, 2017 at 11:00 a.m. in the Historic Sanctuary of the Vidalia First Baptist Church. Burial will follow in Lakeview Memorial Gardens. The family will receive friends in the historical sanctuary from 10:00 a.m. until just prior to the service.
In lieu of flowers the family suggests that gifts in Mell’s memory may be made to Brewton Parker College, P.O. Box 197, Mount Vernon, Georgia 30445; or to the Altama Gallery, P. O. Box 33, Vidalia, Georgia 30475; or Community Hospice Foundation, P. O. Box 2277, Vidalia, Georgia 30475. In addition, Mell would have been pleased for those who loved her to extend a random act of kindness to someone in need of a caring hand.