Sylvia Mary Rucker, 78, died on Tuesday, December 18, 2012.
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Born July 29, 1934 in Cincinnati, Ohio, she was a daughter of the late Irvin Louis and Mary Catherine Binder Bratfish.
Mrs. Rucker graduated Summa Cum Laude from Western Hills High School, Cincinnati, Ohio, where she was active in many academic and social clubs. She received a scholarship to attend the University of Cincinnati where she majored in mathematics and was an officer of her class and a member of Zeta Tau Alpha Sorority. Mrs. Rucker received her Bachelor of Science in Education, Master of Education and Specialist in Gifted Education from the University of Georgia with a major in Math Education.
During the 1950's, she was chosen by General Electric in Cincinnati, Ohio, to work as a computer programmer in their new Jet Engine Division. On August 31, 1957, Sylvia married Jerald J. Rucker in Cincinnati, Ohio. While her husband was earning his graduate degrees at the University of Illinois in Champagne-Urbana she was a computer programmer for the Chemistry Department on the groundbreaking ILLIAC computer, based on mathematician John von Neumann's design, one of the earliest computers.
Mrs. Rucker moved to Athens, Georgia in 1960 with her husband, Professor Jerald J. Rucker. For many years, she was an active member of the University Women's Club, and the Athens Junior Women's Club. She was also a Girl Scout Leader. A member of Chapelwood United Methodist Church since 1962, she sang in the choir from 1962 until 2010 and was a member of the Methodist Women's Club.
Mrs. Rucker taught math and gifted studies for many years in Clarke County, Walton County, Charter Winds, Athens Technical College and Truett-McConnell College.
In addition to her husband of fifty-five years, Jerald J. Rucker of Athens, GA; she is survived by her daughter, Leslie L. Rucker of Athens, GA; sister, Lois Radel of Hilton Head Island, SC; sister-in-law, Beverly Bratfish of Cincinnati, Ohio; brother-in-law, Robert Itin of Dearborn, MI; 7 nieces and nephews; and many great nieces and nephews.
Funeral services will be Sunday, January 6, 2013 at 3 p.m. at Chapelwood United Methodist Church. Interment will follow at Athens Memory Gardens. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Chapelwood United Methodist Church (Choir or Building Funds), 100 Janice Dr., Athens, GA 30606; or the
. The family will receive friends on Saturday, January 5, 2013, from 5-7 p.m. at Lord and Stephens, EAST.
Lord and Stephens, EAST, is in charge of arrangements. www.lordandstephens.com
Lord & Stephens Funeral Home - East Chapel
4355 Lexington Road
Athens, GA 30605
Published in Athens Banner-Herald on Dec. 30, 2012