Katie Lee Key Gardner JordanFebruary 23, 1929 - May 13, 2013
Mrs. Katie Lee Key Gardner Jordan, 84, of 510 Ridgeway Drive, Mount Airy, passed away Monday afternoon, May 13, 2013, at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, surrounded by her husband, children, and three of her seven grandchildren. Mrs. Jordan, who suffered a stroke Sunday afternoon, was born February 23, 1929, in Surry County, one of four children born to the late Joseph Avery and Elra Poindexter Key. Katie was a homemaker and disciple-maker, who leaves a legacy of children and grandchildren and untold others she influenced to become followers of Jesus Christ, whom she worshipped as a member of First Baptist Church. A family friend wrote these encouraging words about her after hearing of her passing, “(She) was a living sermon every day of her life. I learned a lot about peace, love, wisdom, and Christ-like living from her. She was the godly woman in Proverbs, the courageous Esther, the astute woman at the well who desired the living water, the Priscilla who opened her home, and the Mary who obediently accepted the will of the Holy Spirit.” She is survived by her husband, Jesse Haywood Jordan of the home, with whom she celebrated wedding “anniversaries” in months, not years, after marrying in 1996. May 17 would have been their 205th anniversary. She also is survived by three daughters and two sons-in-law, Dianne and V.C. Bruton of Roanoke Rapids, Debbie Gardner of Greensboro, and Dana and John Villalba of Weston, FL; a son and daughter-in-law, Dale and Marian Gardner of Orlando, FL; two stepsons and their wives, Woody and Susie Jordan and Steve and Jeanette Jordan, all of Mount Airy, and their families; seven grandchildren and their spouses, Vinton and Marla Bruton, Katie and Chris Greene, David and Stephanie Bruton, Mary Jo and Ben Murch, Andrea Villalba, Sydney Villalba, and Ivan Villalba; twelve great-grandchildren; and six sisters-in-law and their families. It was her great joy to host all her family members at annual week-long gatherings in various places, where she nurtured the ties that kept her family so closely knit, a good work she labored to achieve even as she raised her children in six foreign countries from the 1950s through 1980s. She and her first husband, Paul Dale Gardner Sr., who preceded her in death in 1995, retired to Mount Airy in 1983. In addition to her parents, Mrs. Jordan also was preceded in death by a sister, Hazel Schoonmaker; and two brothers, Amos Key and Don Key. A service to celebrate Katie’s life will be held Thursday, May 16, 2013, at 3:00 PM at First Baptist Church, with Dr. Roger B. Gilbert officiating. Interment will follow at Oakdale Cemetery. The family will receive friends Thursday from 1:00 PM until 3:00 PM in the Fireside Room at First Baptist Church. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the First Baptist Church Building Fund, 714 North Main Street, Mount Airy, NC 27030; or The Gideons International, Memorial Bible Program, P.O. Box 1032, Mount Airy, NC 27030. Moody Funeral Services in Mount Airy is serving the family.