Dani Katherine Cardea "Kaye" Greene

March 21, 2021

Kaye Greene passed away March 21, 2021, surrounded by her devoted husband and children. Kaye suffered from dementia, which finally overtook her mighty body and soul. The family will be forever grateful for the loving care she received from The Ivey Memory Wellness Day Center and Sabina and Tudor Bagarean of S&T Senior Care Lakeside.  

Kaye was born and raised in Welch, West Virginia, a small coal-mining town in southern West Virginia. She was the daughter of the late Hobart Cosimo Cardea, Sr., and the late Pauline Midge Creed. Her childhood was largely impacted by her three siblings, and her doting Italian aunts, uncles, and cousins who formed the woman she was until the end. She is the beloved wife of Ralph Leon Greene, Jr. 

Kaye was a cheerleader in high school, and rarely missed an opportunity to perform some of her favorite cheers for family, friends, and strangers. She was a proud camper at Thomas E. Lightfoot camp and often recited the anthems she learned at camp. Kaye attended West Virginia University in Morgantown, WV, and St. Mary’s School of Nursing in Huntington, WV, where she met Ralph who was doing a summer rotation for medical school.

She began her nursing career in obstetrics and gynecology. She helped deliver a baby on the day Neil Armstrong landed on the moon. She convinced that new mom (let’s call her “Mrs. Smith”) to name her son Neil Armstrong Smith, and fashioned a cap out of aluminum foil for the photo shoot with the local newspaper. Wonder how many times poor Neil has heard “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind”? Sorry, Neil! 

She married her husband of fifty-one years on December 27, 1969, in Welch, WV, much to the chagrin of her aunts who wanted a Spring wedding to use fresh flowers from their gardens. Instead, they had four feet of snow.

Ralph and Kaye moved to Charlotte for Ralph’s internship and residency in 1970, and Kaye worked at Presbyterian Hospital in medical surgery. Angela Cardea Greene was born in 1971 before the family moved to Tacoma, WA, from 1974 to 1976 when Ralph served in the Army. Kaye decided she would help Ralph iron on the required military patches. She ignored the instructions and put them where she thought they looked best. Needless to say, Ralph got a new uniform. Jennifer Lynn Greene was born in Tacoma in 1974. 

The family moved back to Charlotte in 1976 and put down their roots. Jonathan Leon Greene was born in Charlotte in 1980. Kaye continued nursing in various capacities before working in residential real estate for a number of years. 

The friendships Kaye made along the way have endured. She was fiercely loyal and would drop anything to help a friend in need. Her presence filled the room. Her laugh was contagious and made you happy. Her joy for life was infectious. She made a lasting impact on countless people just by being her authentic self. 

All were welcome. Kaye’s house was a home for her family, friends, children’s friends, and neighbors alike. Endless memories were made at the Greene’s residence. 

Kaye is survived by her husband Dr. Ralph Leon Greene, Jr., and her beloved dog Toots. She is also survived by her daughter Angela Cardea Greene Hilsabeck (Angie) of Hingham, MA, her husband Jonathan Christopher Hilsabeck (Jon), and their children Katherine Cardea Hilsabeck (Kate), Ellie Walker Hilsabeck, and Jane McLaurin Hilsabeck; her daughter Jennifer Lynn Greene Imo of Alexandria, VA, her husband Kenneth Ogbonna Chigoziri Imo, and their children Olivia James Nnenna Imo, Cecilia Grace Adanma Imo, and Juliet Cardea Adaora Imo; and her son Jonathan Leon Greene of Charlotte, NC, his wife Rhea Deanne Dejesus Greene, and their children Lulu Sara Greene, Max James Greene, and Milo Cardea Greene. 

Kaye is survived by her older brother John Alexander Cardea, his wife Diane Collins Cardea, and their children Michael, Tony, Cindy, and Anne Catherine Cardea. 

She is also survived by her sister Alice Mariotti Davidson, her husband Charles Berry Davidson, Jr., their sons Nicholas Davidson (Nick) and Chuck Davidson (or Chuckie to Kaye), his wife Michelle Davidson, and their son Dylan. Kaye is also survived by her half-sister Lisa Cardea Artimez, her husband Aaron Artimez, and their children Joey and Julia.

Kaye is preceded in death by her brother Anthony Michael Cardea (Tony) and her parents. 

Due to the pandemic, the immediate family will have a service, which will be broadcast virtually at 2:00 P.M. EST on Thursday, March 25, 2021 from Christ Episcopal Church at http://www.christchurchcharlotte.org/funeral-live-broadcast/. Memorials can be made to The Ivey Memory Wellness Day Center, 6030 Park S Dr., Charlotte, NC 28210, or the Alzheimer’s Association at alz.org or PO Box 96011, Washington, DC 20090.

Arrangements are in the care of Kenneth W. Poe Funeral & Cremation Service, 1321 Berkeley Ave., Charlotte, NC; 28204 (704) 641-7606. Online condolences can be shared at www.kennethpoeservices.com.

Share your memories & condolences


  • Anthony cardea

    We are deeply sorry for the loss of this dear lady and the blessing she brought to our lives. You will be in our prayers and thoughts.
    We love you

  • Tom Bary

    We are so sorry for you loss and hope that wonderful memories of Kaye will comfort you. Kaye was always fun and full of life. I have many memories from High School of Kaye. Her humor always added to any occasion. You are in our thoughts and we extend our deepest sympathy . Tom and Bonnie Bary

  • Bob Teague

    I am so sorry about Kays death dementia is so hard on the whole family. You'all were wonderful neighbors

  • Anne Barnard Schmit/Don Schmit

    Dear Ralph and family, we were so saddened to hear of Kaye's passing. The obituary was beautifully written and definitely captured Kaye's spirit. We remember her contagious enthusiasm for life and her sense of humor. She helped us to find our "forever home" and for that, we will be forever grateful. May your faith sustain you and your memories comfort you during this time of grief and loss. With love, Anne, Don, Evan and Liam Schmit

  • Vincent Piccirelli

    John, I am so sorry for your loss. May God’s peace be upon you and your family.

  • Patsy Hillen

    A beautiful memorial service. Such an amazing lady. Kaye was a second Mom to Ashley. We always loved the “Kaye stories” That were both funny and caring. Prayers for strength and healing for this family as you go through this sad time.

  • Janet Harlan

    So sorry to hear of Kaye’s passing. My husband and I remember the fun we had during our trip to Kenya in 2011. Kaye was the life and soul of our group. Hoping the happy memories sustain you during this difficult time.

  • Ron Oliver

    I attended Welch High School when Kaye was there. I was a senior and she was a junior. Kaye had the best personality, always smiling and a kind of laughter that would warm your heart. Kaye was a friend to every one including me. I treasure the memories of her and feel very fortunate that I was one of her friends. I was so sadden to hear of her passing. God bless and be with her husband, kids and grand kids during this very sad time. RIP Kaye...you will me missed by so may people who's heart you touched.

  • Larry and Denise Ginn

    Dear Greene Family, We were sadden to hear of the loss of Kaye. We pray that the Lord will comfort each of you during this most difficult time. We remember her kind spirit and how much fun she had at Jasmine and Kelvin's wedding. We will continue to keep all of you in our prayers.❤️

  • Mensah Family

    May the good Lord bring your guys comfort. As This promises for one day we'll all be together, where there's no more pain, suffering, sadness or death. Until then rest in perfect peace.

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