Geraldine Durham French, 93, of Maretburg passed away on May 16, 2023, at University Kentucky Medical Center following a brief illness. Born on September 24, 1929, she was the eldest child of Walter & Ida Lear Durham. Geraldine was born in a log cabin, located at the mouth of Horse Lick Creek.
She is preceded in death by her husband of 75 years, Ben Cecil French, beloved eldest daughter Vincenta French Howard, son-in-law, Larry Montgomery Howard, sister Iverene Durham Brooks, and brother, Ted Durham.
She is survived by her daughter Benedetta French Stilwell, son-in-law Brian David Stilwell, and two grandchildren Tanya Vincenta Stilwell and Benjamin Brian Stilwell, sister Estelle Durham Martin and brother Bentley Durham.
Geraldine decided, at a very young age, she wanted to be a schoolteacher and attended the Annville Institute and Sue Bennett College. She later obtained a Bachelor of Education from Eastern Kentucky University while also raising a family and working as a teacher. Geraldine “Ms. French” retired after 40 years and had become endeared to many generations of Rockcastle and Jackson Countians.
Geraldine French was an extraordinarily talented seamstress, quilter, crochet/knit expert, and artist. She loved fishing and family vacations. She was a long-time member of Maretburg Baptist church, taught Sunday School, volunteered for Maretburg Cemetery and a member of the Kentucky Retired Teachers Association. She also had a cake business where she made cakes for all events, including weddings!
Geraldine Durham French was a spectacular woman, who took pride in everything she did. Most notable was her love for her friends and family. Although now departed from this world, her spirit will be eternally remembered and our love for her will never end. Our hearts are broken on this mortal earth, but she is flying high loving us from above.
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