Ruth Myers Nance Montfort

May 31, 2022

Ruth Myers Nance Montfort age 93, died on May 31, 2022 in Charlotte, NC. She was also born in Charlotte on March 5, 1929 to Ennis Susan ("Bobbie") Myers Nance and Dr. Charles L. Nance. Her parents predeceased her, as did her brother, Dr. Charles L. Nance, Jr. and his wife, Linda Patton Nance.

She is survived by her husband of 68 years, the Rev. Dr. Russell T. Montfort of Charlotte; her son, Joel Paul Montfort; and her daughter, the Rev. Leslie Montfort Marsicano and her husband, Michael Marsicano, all of Charlotte, NC.

Also surviving are grandchildren: Dr. Christopher Marsicano of Davidson, NC. and his wife Michele Marsicano of Davidson, NC (and Nashville, TN); Jamie Marsicano of Carrboro, NC: David Marsicano of Memphis, TN and great-grand-daughter Grace Marie Marsicano of Davidson, NC.

Mrs. Montfort was a graduate of Charlotte’s Central High School and received an AB degree from Duke University. Later, she was a member of the first class to receive an MA in special education from UNC-CH.

She taught special education classes in three Piedmont NC cities. In one instance before widespread desegregation, she was the first white teacher and the only white person in an inner-city school. She found it enriching and learned protocols and procedures that prepared her for subsequent appointments.

Later, Mrs. Montfort tutored children and youth with learning disabilities in the American School in Bonn, Germany - at the time, the capital city of The Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany). With 160 foreign delegations to West Germany posted in Bonn, many diplomats wanted to enroll their children in the American School to learn English as a second language. Asked by the principal to develop a curriculum, Mrs. Montfort drew on her strategies for teaching students with learning disabilities and her own study of conversational German to organize classes for students from Israel, Japan, several Arabic-speaking countries, African nations and Eastern European states.

In Charlotte, she was instrumental in the organization of The Joy Community (a gathering of adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities) at Providence United Methodist Church.

A service of death and resurrection will be held at Providence United Methodist Church (2810 Providence Road) at 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, June 4, 2022. The family will receive friends following the service in the church atrium.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that friends consider donating to UMAR (a non-profit serving adults with intellectual disabilities) at 5350 77 Center Drive, Suite 201, Charlotte, NC 28217 or Levine & Dickson Hospice House at Aldersgate, 3211 Bishops Way Lane, Suite 1000, Charlotte, NC 28215.

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

Share your memories & condolences


  • Sally Ahner

    I knew Ruth when she and Russ served West End UMC here in Nashville. She was a regal presence and her smile was full of warmth. I know her departure from this life has left a void. I also know she is with the angels. May God bless you all!

  • Melvin and Anita McIntosh

    Russ, we are on vacation with family and read Ruth’s obituary in the Charlotte Observer, and saw that her Service is today. We are sorry that we can not be there and want you to know that we will be with you in spirit, and prayer. May God’s greatest comfort be with you and your family.

  • Buddy and Dianne Benedict

    Dear Russ----Dianne and I are very saddened at the news of Ruth's death. She was such special person loved by so many. We stand beside you Joe and Leslie in your grief. Our years together at West End shaped us in important ways. We remember the many times Ruth supported us in ministry with her grace and charm.
    Buddy and Dianne

  • John Redmond

    Ruth was truly a wonderful person and I so enjoyed the time that I got to spend with both Russ and Ruth. She will be missed but leaves behind a legacy that people can point to and truly say she lived life the way our Lord Jesus Christ intended for all of us.
    I am truly sorry for your loss and for the loss to everyone whose life she touched.

  • Nancy Young

    Dear Russ, Leslie and Michael,

    Ruth Montfort was one of my most favorite people. My son David Underwood became a member of the Joy Class and loved it. He never willingly missed a Sunday Morning with the Montforts and his Sunday School friends.

    Ruth was lovely, gracious, very smart and caring. She and Russ made the perfect couple to begin the Joy Class and eventually turned it over to another group of dedicated, loving teachers. Leslie, I will be sending some memories in writing to you either in care of Kenneth Poe or Providence Methodist Church.

    David will be there on Saturday with his friends to celebrate Ruth's life. My thoughts, love and prayers are with you and your family. David dropped his head in sadness when hearing of her passing.

    Nancy Underwood Young

  • Drew Hendley

    Saw her every year at the Nance Reunion in Peachland NC… I always remember her being a gracious lady who will be deeply missed! ?


    What a shock to open todays paper and see that Ruth has passed, The blessed are supposed to be here for us forever, yet it was simply her time to be promoted. At the family reunions, she was one of the family that I always wanted to talk to and share thoughts. We have not had a reunion due to covid and I have moved away, but I will always be proud that I knew such a kind, gentle and sincere soul.