Melva T. Rucker was born in Baltimore, Maryland on September 2, 1950 to Fannie Coleman and the late Claude Coleman. Melva was affectionately called Penny by her friends but also had some other nicked names such as Penny Wenny, Winning Penny and Penny Rucker the Busy Bee Helper.
Penny received her education through the Baltimore City School System. She graduated from Eastern High School in 1969. Penny joined the United States Army Reserve as a proud and active Army Reservist and attended Baltimore Community College. In 1991 she received an AA degree in Nursing. She then began her career with the VA Hospital where she worked for over 20 years until she retired.
In 1973 Penny met the love of her life, James Thomas Rucker who just recently proceeded her in death. As the story goes in 1975 Jimmy realize and said “I FOUND A PENNY...ONE I COULDN’T SPEND”. So he ask her to marry him and she said “yes” so Jimmy and Melva (Penny) Coleman were married. From this union they were blessed with children Ayesha and Cameron Rucker and James (Jay) T. Rucker who preceded her in death. Penny and Jimmy where inseparable and they had no problem letting the world know how much they loved each other. When you saw one you saw the other. They would always give each other those 3 quick kisses when they greeted each other or departed from one another.
Along with her Siblings, Penny was baptized at the early age of 10, in Halifax Virginia at the Countyline Baptist Church which was the Hometown Church of her Grandparents. She later came to Baltimore, Maryland and joined Southern Baptist Church along with her Parents and Siblings.
Penny was always a woman of who loved GOD. In 1981 Penny along with her husband Jimmy joined The Garden of Prayer Baptist Church under the Late Rev. George A. Hurt and the Late Apostle Melvin B. Tuggle. While at the Garden of Prayer Penny was installed as a Deaconess. While at the Garden of Prayer both Penny and her husband were members of the Missionary Ministry.
Penny was faithful and supportive to her call as a Deaconess & Missionary and a Member of the choir. Whenever the Pastor ask Penny to do anything she was always willing to help and go beyond the call of duty. Penny had the Gift of Help and she would help anyone in anyway she could. Her training in nursing was always helpful in her ministries in the Church. Along with her husband she would use their vehicles as the church bus, picking up members and dropping them off.
In August 2014, wanting to support her beloved niece whom God had elevated to Pastor, Penny along with her husband Jimmy and their family became members of A New Beginning Christian Church. Under the leadership of her niece, Pastor Sheila Baker., Penny and her husband was part of the Original 12 Church Planting Team Members. Remaining Deaconess Melva ( Penny) loved her Church, and even during her illness she would press her way through the extreme pain. Penny was very active at the church she was President of the Deaconess Board, a member of the Choir, Pastoral Care, Vice President of The ANBCC Evangelism Missionary Outreach, Kitchen Committee, Prayer Ministry, Advisor to the Youth Choir and her all time favorite the President of the ANBCC Usher Board. Penny was also Vice President of the A New Beginning Christian Church “ Winning The Fight” Cancer Support Ministry. Truly Penny was a fighter. She would not allow cancer to win after beating cancer so many times. Her children
and family believe that it wasn’t cancer that transitioned Penny it was a broken heart...after the death of her beloved husband Jimmy...two weeks prior on the same exact day.
Penny had some hidden talents. She was an excellent bowler and could make the best chocolate cakes. She never stop using and applying her nursing skills. You could always call on Penny if you were not feeling well or had any aches or pains and get her advice as to what to do. Even through her own pain she would try to aid you and help you through yours. Penny loved playing all types of card games but she truly enjoyed playing pinochle. Especially double decked pinochle. She would play double deck pinochle with her parents, mother-in-law, father-In-law and her
beloved Jimmy, her sister-In-laws, beloved friend Regina and her late brother-in-law, Joe. They would play double pinochle until the next day. Penny had such a kind heart. She would not hesitate to help you if she could. If you needed her for anything she was there. She was truly a friend to all who would meet her. She was a great listener. When it comes down to rewards for the best Grandma it goes to Penny. She really loved and adored her grandchildren. She didn't mind watching and taking care of them when she had to. She loved them deeply.
ANYONE WHO KNEW MELVA PENNY RUCKER WOULD KNOW YOU WERE TOUCHED BY AN ANGEL
Penny leaves to cherish her memory her son, Cameron Rucker, daughter, Ayesha Rucker, stepdaughter LaTina Williamson, 10 grandchildren; 1 great-grandchild, Mother, Fannie Coleman, Sister, Sandra Folks (Roy Folks), Sister, Angela Brown (Andre Brown), Brother, Dwayne Coleman (Dion), Sister In-Law, Judith (Judy)Elliott, Sister In- Law Mary(Connie)Mickey (Mike Mickey), Best Friends to the End Ruben & Sandy Bell and a host of Nieces and Nephews and Cousins , Family and her Church Family and Friends.
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