Mary Rankin-Derr

Mary Rankin-Derr

Wednesday, June 15th, 1932 - Sunday, May 30th, 2021
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Mrs. Mary Rankin Derr, 88, of Statesville, NC peacefully departed this life on Sunday, May 30, 2021, at the Gordon Hospice House in Statesville. She was born in Alexander County on June 15, 1932, to the late Rev. Gaither and Eula Bell Dula.

Mary graduated from Happy Plains High School in Taylorsville, NC in 1950. She went to Spears-Etta Beauty College in Charlotte, straight out of high school in 1951. She began her career by working two years with Daisy Ramseur in Statesville and then set up her own shop in Taylorsville where she worked for 15 years. Afterwards she moved back to Statesville and continued to work in her shop on W. Front Street. In 2011, a true pioneer in the business put away her curlers and scissors after 60 years. Over ten or more apprentices, including two nieces, Ericka Morrison and Michele Dula have worked under her guidance and are well established in their own businesses today.
Mary was united in holy matrimony to Leon Rankin on August 18, 1957, who preceded her in death, and from this union were born two children, Illora and Eric. She later married, Franklin Derr Sr. on April 13, 2002, who also preceded her in death.

Mary lived for God. She loved her family and her church. She would bring her Sunday School book to her shop and read her lessons while waiting on a client. She was a devoted and faithful member of Logan Presbyterian Church in Scotts, NC. She faithfully attended Sunday School, was a member of the United Presbyterian Women and the Chancel Choir. Her presence and her beautiful smile will be missed, but her joyous spirit will live on.
She leaves to cherish the memory of her life, her daughter, Illora Chambers of Kernersville, NC and her son, Eric (Mary) Rankin of Statesville, NC. Two stepsons, Franklin Derr Jr of Cary, NC and Stephen Derr of Durham, NC. Three sisters, Irene Whisonant of Winston-Salem, NC, JoAnn Brown of Winston-Salem, NC, Linda Hairston of Winston-Salem, NC and two brothers, Billy Ray (Pauline) Watts of Statesville, NC, and Everette (Cynthia) Dula of Taylorsville, NC. Honorable mention: devoted niece, Joyce Ann Hairston and devoted hairstylist and family friend, Brenda Guest. Two grandchildren, Jontae (Leon) Buxton, Winston-Salem, NC, and Eric Rankin II, Hickory, NC. Three great-grandchildren, Braylon, Peyton, and Mason Buxton of Winston-Salem, NC and a host of nephews, nieces, church family, other relatives and friends.

A Beautician’s Prayer

Lord, continue to anoint my hands with care
And bless me daily as I shampoo, press & curl hair.
Continue to remind me that in your image I was made
And work is more than doing a cut, color or fade.
My shop is still a place where I can glorify you in everything that I do.
Lord help me not to be just a beautician, but an example of you
And Let Your love and patience shine through me too.
And when the scissors have finally been put away,
Let me have made a difference in someone’s day.

You Can Only Have One Mother

You can only have one mother
Patient kind and true;
No other friend in all the world,
Will be the same to you.
When other friends forsake you,
To mother you will return,
For all her loving kindness,
She asks nothing in return.
As we look upon her picture,
Sweet memories we recall,
Of a face so full of sunshine,
And a smile for one and all.
Sweet Jesus, take this message,
To our dear mother up above;
Tell her how we miss her,
And give her all our love.

Love you momma, Illora and Eric

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Service Details

  • Visitation

    Friday, June 4th, 2021 | 1:30pm - 2:00pm
    Friday, June 4th, 2021 1:30pm - 2:00pm
    Rutledge and Bigham Mortuary
    603 South Center Street
    Statesville, NC 28677
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Service

    Friday, June 4th, 2021 | 2:00pm
    Friday, June 4th, 2021 2:00pm
    Rutledge and Bigham Mortuary
    603 South Center Street
    Statesville, NC 28677
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Interment

    Logan Presbyterian Church
    209 Logan New Amity Road
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


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Private Condolence
Randy & Pamela McCullough and Love, your UNC-G Friends for Life sent flowers to the family of Mary Rankin-Derr.
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Dionne Tatum Lyde

Posted at 07:37pm
Aunt Mary was the sweetest❤️ She always made my hair look good 😊 May her legacy live on ✨
She is greatly loved and cherished 🙏

John and Laura Kilpatrick

Posted at 11:27am
Our condolences on the recent passing of your beloved mother. All our love and prayers.
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Sharon Dooley Simpson

Posted at 04:48pm
My mom, Geneva, would take Mary and Brenda homemade pickles and they would just laugh and talk about how good those pickles were. Mary will be truly missed. Love to the family. Praying for comfort for you all. Love Sharon

Illora Chambers

Posted at 01:18pm
Thank you family, friends, and church family for such a wonderful and beautiful homegoing celebration for our mother. Love you all!
Illora and Eric

Darlene Kent

Posted at 05:21pm
Condolences to Mrs. Mary's Entire Family she was one of the sweetest Ladies I have met in a long time, I went to her for my hair for so many years, I remember her telling me she played Basket ball in school and started doing hair when she was 18 years old. She will be remembered for her friendly Sprit. I just found out today she has gained her crown!

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