November 13, 1925 - October 18, 2018
A Celebration for a Life Lived to the Fullest Nell Rivers Gannaway, 25 days short of 93 years of age died peacefully at 5:30 pm on October 18, 2018. Nell spent the last seven months of life with her daughter and son-in-law, Jo and Grady Coggins, in Rising Fawn, Georgia, on the top of Lookout Mountain. Born and named Nellie Maydell Rivers, November 13, 1925, she was the third child of Theresa (Dell) and Heyward (Jake) Rivers in Augusta, GA, in their life long home on Olive Road. To try and recapture all of the Highlights of Nell’s life would require a book and is beyond the scope of this writing. Her main legacy in Life, besides her children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren, would be her love for people, her special friends, and her ability to connect and share with them. Rarely would she meet a stranger; she enjoyed talking to and charming anyone who took the time to sit and chat for a spell. She loved to laugh and have fun. She loved being the ‘boss’. She could be audacious, a force to be reckoned with AND a strength and pillar. She always tried to be available for her family and friends. Her only claim to vanity were her beautiful hands and fingernails. She loved getting Gel Nails and even at 92 she used Ferarri RED. She was constantly complimented about her nails and loved it. Her accomplishments include but are not limited to: raising her family and launching them into the world, owning and running a child care center, owning and managing The Cross and The Crown Christian Bookstore in Conyers with her husband, Tolbert, in their retirement years. The mainstay in her life was her FAITH, her relationship to Jesus, GOD and her church. Nell was always involved in her church and LOVED being the Managing Cook in the Kitchen and/or LOVED teaching her Sunday School class. She loved to sing, sounded much like a cross between a crow and a burro, would laugh and say she had been taught to sing with JOY to the Lord, no matter. About 19 years ago she helped found a new non denominational church in Conyers, GA, Haven Fellowship. She has loved it so faithfully. And she especially loved Steve and Lynn Powers, Pastor, Pastor’s wife and dear friends. There is simply not enough space and time to list her long, long list of friends. She loved to “argue” (debate) as she was taught by her mother, who told Nell that she was the best of all the kids to argue with... she would argue her Faith and Beliefs with anyone and with the best. She was most often admired for her stance. Nell is preceded in death by her parents, Heyward and Dell Rivers; her brother, Heyward Jr.; her son, whom she loved so much, James Heyward, (Chuck); her sister, Martha Louise Jarrell; her husband, Tolbert E. Gannaway; and her brother, Harold E. Rivers. Nell’s family has always been large and wonderful. She is survived by her sister, Nancy R. Warren (Jack) of Lake Oconee in Greensboro, GA. Her daughters: Peggy C. Olson (Grant) of Statham, GA.; Jo C. Coggins (Grady) of Rising Fawn, GA; Jane C. Malcom (Mike) of Lake Arrowhead in Waleska, GA. She loved and nurtured her five wonderful grandchildren (listed in chronological order): Chanda Ross Clements, Athens, GA; Carmen Ross Seckinger (Doy), Commerce, GA; Jake Wayne Coggins, Conyers, GA; Mindy M. McGee (Mark), Calhoun, GA; and Christi M. Ward (Brent), Canton, GA. In the last 18 years of her life, Nell was BLESSSED and delighted by her 10 GREAT Grandchildren. She was always excited by a new baby coming and loved watching them growing up. Listed in order of birth: Cali Brooke Weed, River Hayes Canalis, Audrey Blythe Canalis, Cassidy Augustus (Gus) Weed, Brynlee Michelle Ward, Cecelia (CeCe) Jordan McGee, Zeke Thelonius Clements, Caroline Joy McGee, Emersyn Alisha Ward, and Robert David McGee (Dave). We are ALL Blessed by this new generation. There are SO MANY nieces and nephews, great nieces, great nephews... far to numerous for this account but loved and honored non the less. However, among the cousins, Nell’s first cousin, Mike Rivers of Winterville, GA, has held a special place in her life and love, always helping to assist and guide her life and the Rivers family. We must add that she loved her faithful companion, Molly, cocker spaniel, who is 13. A funeral service with be held by the Loving longtime friends at Haven Fellowship in Conyers, Georgia, on Monday, October 22, 2018. Visitation with family and friends will be held at 11:00am at the church, the Service will be at 12:00 noon, officiated by friend and Pastor Ernie Forrester. Interment will be at Lawnwood Memorial Gardens in Covington, GA, beside her husband, Tolbert and her son, Chuck. Following the interment there will be a celebration of food and fellowship at Haven Fellowship provided by the Care Committee, long time friend Alice Mason and Nell’s Sunday School Class. The Family wishes to give thanks Hearth Hospice, Ryan Funeral Home in Trenton, GA and Haven Fellowship congregation. In lieu of flowers Nell would wish donations to be made to the Benevolence Fund at Haven Fellowship, 2240 Smyrna Rd SW, Conyers, GA 3004.
A Celebration for a Life Lived to the Fullest Nell Rivers Gannaway, 25 days short of 93 years of age died peacefully at 5:30 pm on October 18, 2018. Nell spent the last seven months of life with her daughter and son-in-law, Jo and Grady Coggins,... View Obituary & Service Information
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