Gloria Jeanne Ramey, 73, of Indianapolis passed away December 26, 2023. She was born December 13, 1950, in Noblesville, the daughter of the late Richard Marvin White Sr. and Mary Lou (Meldrum) White.
A gregarious, athletic, and loving child, Gloria, grew up in Carmel where you could find her at the tops of trees and playing games with the neighborhood children including her brother, Rick. She loved spending time with her Grandparents Alma and Clair Meldrum who lived behind them. She even attempted to run away once as a little girl and went to their house; her parents didn’t even know she was gone when they called them. Her father would take her golfing and fishing. She played basketball and the clarinet in band at school. Shortly after graduating she met the love of her life, Dan. They got married soon after they started dating knowing that they had met their match. They lived in Florida for a year before moving back to Carmel where she caught an alligator in the Rainbow River while there fishing with her father-in-law. Dan and Gloria were in love and happy when they found out they were expecting their first child five years later. However, before they could have their child together tragedy struck. Her husband passed after a car accident in April and a couple of months later her father passed suddenly from a heart attack as well. She gave birth to her daughter, Shannon, a short time after their funerals. She was an incredibly amazing and strong woman even at 25. She raised her daughter with joy and made sure to make every holiday magical for her. She even had Rick come over on Christmas and get on the roof to jingle bells and say, “Ho, Ho, Ho, Merry Christmas!”, while Shannon was in the house running from window to window to see if she could catch a glimpse of Santa. Making sure to add footprints from the fireplace to the stocking every year.
A few years later with a year of college behind her, Gloria felt that they needed protection, so she bought the cutest, most rambunctious, and loving black German Shepherd puppy and named him Kreiger which means warrior in German. She decided to train him and started attending AAA Obedience School in Indianapolis on 38th Street where she made friends with the owner, Ernie. She made friends just about everywhere she went. I am not sure she ever knew a stranger. Gloria quickly trained Kreiger. She stayed and learned so much about training dogs. While her family of dogs was growing, she started showing them at AKC dog shows and fun matches. She earned so many degrees with them. She enjoyed the competition and thrived in it. She eventually became one of the best dog trainers in Indiana and maybe the world. Gloria would never say that about herself though. She started a dog club and became the President. They ended up yearly putting on one of the largest Fun Matches in Indiana for approximately 5 years before it grew to be too much. She always loved her dogs and animals dearly and each one was so special to her. They were her family, and she liked a big family.
While at the dog school, Ernie decided to open a tropical fish store next door. Never let a 7-year-old name a store. It was called Fish “n” More. We received a lot of calls for fried Perch and Catfish. More interestingly, Gloria took a shine to the fish and started taking care of them. There were around a hundred tanks maybe more, and the fish were so fascinating. Under her care, there were fish that bred that weren’t supposed to in captivity. With a great sense of humor, when asked what she did to make that happen she said, she lit candles and put on soft music. One of her great qualities was finding the humor in life.
During this time, she was contacted by Civic Theater. They needed a dog for a rendition of the play “Of Mice and Men”. They fell in love with Circe, a beautiful, laid back, black and tan long haired German Shepherd. She took Circe to the practices and each session of the play. Circe performed around 28 times. Everyone loved Circe and Gloria. On the last night of the play, Ernie had to take Circe to the play as Gloria was in the hospital. At age 40, she had her first open heart surgery. It was a painful recovery. A couple of year later she remarried. Then at age 45, she received her second open heart surgery. With another painful recovery, she had a total of 5 bypasses during these 2 surgeries. The doctor told her daughter that while there was no way to really tell how long Gloria would survive, he had proposed 5 years. Thank God he was wrong.
Along the way, she joined her Petco family. She spent time in almost every position in the store over the years and met a lot of people. She loved them all and was a staple at the Carmel Petco location. She loved her coworkers and would often bring breakfast to the younger ones to make sure they had something to eat that day. While there as a dog trainer, she taught a particular group of kids that she came to love as her own. She was so proud of them. It was a blessing to hear her speak of them. Each one of them participated in the 4H dog show and ended up winning the top performances of the show and State Champion. One of them gave her an embossed leather necklace that still hangs on her rear-view mirror today. This went on for multiple years. She glowed when talking about how well they did and just about them each as a person and their dogs in general. She still has kept in touch with them and their lives. Calling them to make sure they were doing well and sending cards. Willing to help with whatever she could.
Throughout her life she owned German Shepherds, Chihuahuas, a Golden Retriever, a Standard Poodle, Rottweilers, and Shelties. There was a particular Shelty named Annie that my mom had an extra fondness for. Annie got Cancer and lost a leg because of it. This made her double down on the Cancer drive at work. She and her coworkers ended up bringing the store in towards the top in the country for donations. Gloria, herself was in the top 10 of the company for receiving donations for multiple years. She was creative and found ways to drum up donations with impressive gusto in the hopes that it could help save a life of a person or animal someday. Everything she set out to do in life she did with such dedication and to the very best of her ability.
Gloria had kept all the cards that people gave her and there are stacks of them. There are so many thank you cards for things she has done for people. With it being Christmas, I recently watched “It’s a Wonderful Life” and noticed the quote under Pa Bailey’s picture that says, “All you can take with you is that which you’ve given away.” Gloria gave away so much love in her life and she is so deeply loved now. Of course, she could be hardheaded, strong willed, intense, dramatic, funny, talkative, humorous, clever, inventive, curious, and so much more, and she was this way because she was so passionate and cared so much about the lives of the people and the animals around her. Gloria showed the love of Christ throughout her life and understood how precious it is. We love you Gloria and she will be missed greatly. Even with the tragedies, she truly lived a wonderful life.
She is survived by her daughter, Shannon Wilson; grandson, Connor Wilson; brother, Rick (Pamela) White; nephew, Mark White; and niece, Larissa White. She was preceded in passing by her husband, Daniel R. Barnes; mother, Mary Lou White; and father, Richard White.
Services will be at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, January 3, 2024, at Flanner Buchanan – Carmel, 325 East Carmel Drive. Visitation will be from 12:30 p.m. until the time of service. Memorial contributions may be directed to the American Cancer Society.