Cover photo for Kitty Lee Nottingham Keith's Obituary
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1929 Kitty 2024

Kitty Lee Nottingham Keith

October 31, 1929 — January 1, 2024

Kitty Lee Nottingham Keith died January 1, 2024. She was the wife of the late Dr. John Edmond Keith. She was born in Baltimore, Maryland to Mary Lee and Aubrey Nottingham on October 31, 1929. She grew up in Eastern Shore, Maryland. She was a graduate of Stuart Hall School in Staunton, Va. And The College of William and Mary. Kitty Nottingham met Jack Keith when both were working in the hospital in Cape Charles, VA. Kitty walked into the operating room where Jack was performing surgery to deliver a score for a ball game. Jack often told his grandchildren that she was such a bright light walking into that room and he was instantly enamored with her beauty. Wanting to ask her out, Jack pulled out all the stops. He elicited a friend and fellow ambulance driver for help. Together, they drove an ambulance up to her house with all sirens and flashing lights engaged. Having Kitty’s full attention, plus that of her mother and the neighbors, Jack asked Kitty out on their first date. She accepted and that creatively chaotic moment began a wonderful life that spanned over 67 years together. Kitty and Jack celebrated the birth of 4 children, 11 grandchildren, 4 great grandchildren along with many well-loved dogs and cats, including one very special dog named Kizzy, who remained by Kitty’s side for the last 10 years. Kitty could get more done in a morning than most people could in a week. She loved to garden, fill her bird feeders and without fail, had dinner on the table every evening for her family. Constant in her faith and devotion to God, Kitty was influential in bringing The Stephen Ministry to First Presbyterian Church. She served on the diaconate and as a leader for Bible Study Fellowship, International. She also taught Sunday school for many years. She opened her home to exchange students from Poland and France. She worked to relocate several refugee families from Laos after the Vietnam War. She made time to volunteer for many causes including The Charles Lee Center where she tutored children with learning disabilities. She devoted time and resources to Young Life, Mobile Meals, The Spartanburg Music Foundation, The Historical Society, Walnut Grove and Citizen Scholars. She loved to travel, and she and Jack visited many countries around the world. Many of their favorite trips were ETV Endowment trips with naturalist Rudy Mancke. She was past president of the Ladies Medical Auxiliary, member of The Junior League, The Spartanburg Art Association and The Community Advisory Committee for then developing USCS. Kitty was girl and cub scout leader and instrumental in her three sons achieving the rank of Eagle Scout. She worked with many of her favorite people at The ETV Endowment and was the wedding coordinator for many years at First Presbyterian Church. She was proud to perform her civic duty as an election poll worker. Her spare time revolved around membership of the Green Gardeners Garden Club, The Book Barters Book Club, The Debutante Club of Spartanburg and Friend of Brookgreen Gardens in Pawley’s Island. When planning their 60th wedding anniversary, Jack told Kitty he would take her anywhere in the world to celebrate. She chose to have all her family join them on the S.C. coast at Debordieu Colony, her favorite place of all. As an only child, a big family was Kitty’s greatest treasure. Surviving are her three sons, John Keith (Karen) of Spartanburg and children Haley, Jackson (Maria), Georgia; Kim Keith (Kristi) of Spartanburg and children Lilla (Darkson) Magrinelli, Graham; Hunter Keith (Missy) of Atlanta and children Katie, Maddie; daughter Lee Eckert (Joe) of Atlanta and children Jacqueline Nichols (John), Emily Harmata (Drew), Keith Eckert (Christy); four great granddaughters and another to arrive in May. She was predeceased by her dear grandson Christopher Nottingham Keith. Visitation will be 10:00-10:45am on Friday, January 5, 2024 at First Presbyterian Church, 393 E. Main Street, Spartanburg, SC 29302. Her funeral will follow at 11:00am in the church, conducted by Rev. Ansley Page. Burial will immediately follow in Greenlawn Memorial Gardens, 1300 Fernwood-Glendale Road, Spartanburg, SC 29307. The family wishes to convey their gratitude to the staff at Eden Terrace for their steadfast care over the last four years. Kitty spent her life helping others, especially children in so many ways. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Healthy Smiles of Spartanburg, PO Box 1441, Spartanburg, SC 29303 or a charity of one’s choice.
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Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Friday, January 5, 2024

10:00 - 10:45 am (Eastern time)

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Funeral Service

Friday, January 5, 2024

Starts at 11:00 am (Eastern time)

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Interment / Burial / Committal

Friday, January 5, 2024

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