Ruth Bell Graham, wife of the famous evangelist Billy Graham, was born at Qingjiang, Kiangsu, China as Ruth McCue Bell, the second of five children. Her parents, Dr. and Mrs. L. Nelson Bell, were medical missionaries at the Presbyterian Hospital 300 miles north of Shanghai. At the age of 13 she was enrolled in high school in Pyongyang, Korea, where she studied for three years. Ruth completed her high school education at Montreat, North Carolina, while her parents were there on furlough. She graduated from Wheaton College in Wheaton, Illinois.
The Grahams met at Wheaton College in Wheaton, Illinois and were married in the summer of 1943, shortly after their graduation. Ruth became a minister's wife for a brief period in Western Springs, Illinois. They lived out the rest of her life in Montreat, North Carolina. The Grahams have five children: Virginia, Anne, Ruth, Franklin and Nelson Edman, nineteen grandchildren, and numerous great grandchildren. Grandson Tullian Tchividjian is senior pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Mrs. Graham wrote “Our Christmas Story,” “Sitting by My Laughing Fire,” “It's My Turn,” “The Legacy of a Pack Rat,” “Prodigals and Those Who Love Them,” “Clouds Are the Dust of His Feet,” “One Wintry Night,” “Coffee and Conversation with Ruth Bell Graham and Gigi Graham Tchividjian,” “Collected Poems,” “Mothers Together,” and “Prayers From A Mother’s Heart.” Mrs. Graham’s most recent books published in 2001 are, “Never Let It End: Poems of a Lifelong Love“ published by Baker Books, “Footprints of a Pilgrim: The Life and Loves of Ruth Bell Graham,” published by Word Publishing and “A Quiet Knowing,” published by W Publishing Group.