Cover photo for Sara Emma Rucker Vincent Haley's Obituary
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Sara Emma Rucker Vincent Haley

December 5, 1926 — December 4, 2021

Sara Emma Rucker Vincent Haley

Sara Emma Rucker Vincent Haley was called home by her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on December 4, 2021, the day before her 95th birthday. Born in Lakemont in Rabun County, Georgia, on December 5, 1926, to the late Guy Whitner Rucker, Sr., and Odella Shirley Rucker, Sara spent her childhood in the mountains of Northeast Georgia and always considered them home. She graduated from Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School and attended Young Harris College before moving to Rome, Georgia, where she met and married Robert H. Vincent, Jr. At the age of 34, she returned to college and later graduate school at the University of Georgia and began a long career in Elberton as a high school social studies teacher whose favorite subjects were economics and American government. She instilled in her students both critical thinking skills and an appreciation for the U.S. constitutional republic. A dedicated and demanding teacher, she was long remembered by the students whose lives she touched.

After retirement in the late 1980s, she and her second husband, Marion Holman Haley, whom she met at a Rabun Gap reunion, moved to Lake Hartwell, where they lived until 2014. She divided her active retirement years between Hartwell and her second home in her beloved mountains. She pursued her love of and talent for art and painted numerous portraits and landscapes that her family members cherish. Two of her paintings are part of the Stations of the Cross at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, where the Haleys were active members for many years. She also volunteered at the Clothes Closet and a literacy program and read to people in nursing homes.

Sara leaves behind her daughter, Robyn Keeler (John); son, Hal Vincent; stepchildren: Judith Rutkin (Gary) and Mike Haley (Chris); grandson, Owen Keeler (Tara); step-grandchildren: Eve Birge (Paul), Colin Mackie (Alison), Thomas Haley, and Mark Haley; five great-grandchildren: Mersadees, Danielle, Philip, Jack, and Will Keeler; step-great-granddaughter, Chiara Birge; two great-great grandchildren: Grayson and Ansley Lyon; sister-in-law, Carolyn Rucker; two nieces: Pam Lilith and Lynda Rucker; and a nephew, Greg Rucker. She was preceded in death by her parents, her husbands, her two brothers: Guy W. Rucker, Jr., and Thomas L. Rucker; and her nephew, Mark Rucker.

Her family is grateful to all the staff at Magnolia Estates for the loving care she received in the last seven years of her life, to the staff of Inspiring Hospice, and to Shante Moon and Ethelene Moon, who were tender caregivers and true blessings during her final months.

A funeral service will be held on Saturday, December 18, 2021, at 11:00 a.m., at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Hartwell. Her cremated remains will be interred at New Bethel Methodist Church beside her late husband.

In lieu of flowers, anyone who wishes may donate to St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, 579 Fairview Ave., Hartwell, GA 30643, or to SafeHouse Ministries, P.O. Box 6336, Elberton, GA 30635, in her memory.

Those wishing may sign the online guestbook at

Berry Funeral Home & Crematory of Elberton is respectfully in charge of arrangements for Sara Emma Rucker Vincent Haley.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Sara Emma Rucker Vincent Haley, please visit our flower store.

Past Services


Saturday, December 18, 2021

Starts at 11:00am (Eastern time)

St. Andrew's Episcopal Church

579 Fairview Street, Hartwell, GA 30643

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New Bethel United Methodist Church Cemetery

, GA 30635

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