DANIELSVILLE - Ella Ruth Thompson Ryder (Ms. Tommie) died Saturday, April 23, 2011.
She was born in the Rogers Mill Community of Madison County to Lola Nelms and Richard Hope Thompson on August 7, 1922. Mrs. Ryder was preceded in death by a grandson, Art Ryder.
She attended Madison County High School where she won blue ribbons for sack-racing, declamations and school plays. After graduation from Georgia State College for Women in 1942, she taught grade school for a year before enlisting in the WAVES where she became a Link Trainer Instructor for Navy pilots learning instrument approach procedures. After the war she taught at a private flying school at the Atlanta airport. Some years later she returned to UGA for her Master's Degree in Special Education. Mrs. Ryder taught the first Special Education class in Madison County. She remained in that position until her retirement in 1985.
Survivors include two sons, Rick M. (Sandy) Ryder, Danielsville, and Art (Kelly) Ryder, Longwood, Fla.; five grandchildren, Sarah and Lee Chancey, Athens, Glenn and Garland Ryder, Danielsville, Will Ryder, Athens, Eva Ryder and Sam Ryder, Longwood, Fla.; and two great-grandchildren, Ella and Lily Kate Chancey.
Funeral services will be held Wednesday, April 27, at 1 p.m. at the Danielsville Methodist Church with Pastor Calvin Ward officiating. Interment will follow at Danielsville Cemetery. The family will receive friends at the funeral home Tuesday, April 26, from 6 until 8 p.m.
Lord & Stephens, Danielsville, is in charge of arrangements.