She was born in Enoree, S.C., in Spartanburg County, on Oct. 20, 1916, and was the last surviving member of her immediate family.
She was a wonderful and loving wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and friend who will be missed by all who knew and loved her.
She has been a member of the Church of God since 1939 and was licensed as a minister in the Church of God in 1942. She was self-educated and finished high school as an adult. In her home state of South Carolina, she was an evangelist, teacher, author, retreat speaker and participant in ladies’ ministries. She wrote many articles for the Evangel, Lighted Pathway, Unique Magazine and the Pilot. She taught in youth camps, conducted vacation Bible schools and taught a Sunday school class for more than 50 years.
In South Carolina, she worked until her middle 80s at the Senior Citizens Center, until she moved to Cleveland in 1999.
After moving to Cleveland, she joined North Cleveland Church of God and taught a Sunday school class until her early 90s. She also participated in the Peace Makers senior group and loved to laugh and tell jokes. She memorized Scripture and led the devotions at the North Cleveland Towers as long as she was able.
She was preceded in death by her husbands, Lewis John Starnes and the Rev. W.R. Craven; son-in-law, W. Dean McKinney Sr.; and granddaughter, Sheila Starnes McKinney.
She is survived by a daughter, Joyce McKinney-Arrington, and her husband, Dr. French L. Arrington; grandson, W. Dean McKinney Jr. and his wife, Cindy, of Chattanooga; great-grandchildren: Joshua and his wife, Brittne, and Nicole McKinney; and several nieces and nephews.
We, the family, would like to express our appreciation to the many friends who visited regularly and to Life Care Center of Cleveland for their care and support. The family requests that memorials be made to the North Cleveland Church of God Peace Makers senior group in honor of Ruth Starnes Craven.
The Remembrance of Life graveside service and interment will be held at 11 a.m. at Greenwood Memorial Gardens in Greenwood, S.C., with W. Dean McKinney Jr. and the Rev. Travis Porter officiating. Pallbearers will be family and friends.
The North Ocoee Chapel of the Jim Rush Funeral Homes has charge of the arrangements.
You may share your condolences and your memories with the Starnes-Craven family at www.jimrushfuneralhomes.com.