Maydell Matilda (Crawford) Rucker was reunited with her partner in crime, Paul Rucker, on Sept. 12, 2015, after 39 years of being apart. She was born on April 29, 1925, in Mason City, Iowa, the daughter of Sam and Fleeta Crawford. She was blessed with three older brothers John, Ken and Bob. She said at times it felt more like a curse than a blessing being the youngest and the only girl. Maydell was a depression era child and from this experience derived a great deal of her strength which her family came to rely on in difficult times.
Maydell met the love of her life, Paul Rucker, in 1958, in California. They moved to Iowa in 1970 after the death of her son, Larry, and made their home in Clear Lake. Maydell had many jobs, the most important being a devoted mom to her children. She worked at Carrolls Cafe, Clear Lake Bakery (May was a donut lover), and beside her husband at Shady Beach. Maydell’s later years were spent traveling between her daughters in California and Florida and enjoying her grandchildren. In 2006 she made her home in California.
May May, as known by her grandchildren, had a life-long love affair with donuts, Johnny Cash, whiskey, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, peas, and the color red, not necessarily in that order.
When May left for that Grand Ole Opry in the sky she left behind her daughters, Judy (husband Ken Grimsley) children Stevie, Jesse, Larry, James, Bryan, Charlie, Burton, and Stephanie. Sue Ellen (husband Mike Mudak). Susan (husband Morey Mirkazemi) children Bijan, Nadia and Nicole. Julie (husband Bill Brothers). Children Bobbi Sue Stalker, Molly, and Billy. Her sons Jefferson Rucker (son Willie) John Rucker (her favorite). Grandchildren Babette May, Christopher, and Hillary May.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Paul and her sons, Larry May and Richard May; her parents, Sam and Fleeta; and her brothers, John, Ken and Bob Crawford.
A celebration of life service was held at her daughter’s home in Bakersfield, Calif. on Sept. 20. A private graveside service will be held at Elmwood cemetery on Oct. 7, followed by a remembrance get-together at her favorite restaurant, The Half Moon, in Clear Lake, at 3 p.m.