Ruth’s father died when she was very young. As soon as she was old enough, she shared along with her mother and siblings in the work of operating a tiny depression-era family farm from their home in Wakefield, Michigan. There were usually just three head of cattle that had to be taken back and forth to pasture, a hog, and lots and lots of chickens. Cash crops included mostly potatoes. Eggs and milk were also income producers.
Ruth was an avid reader while she went to school in Wakefield. Later she received a nursing diploma from the University of Michigan and BSN and MSN degrees from Indiana University where she met her future husband. She liked mathematics and often said that she might have preferred a career in, for example, engineering, a field that at the time she made a choice, women were given little encouragement to enter.
Serving as a nurse in the U.S. Air Force in 1958 – 1960 was a big adventure in her life. She was stationed in Turkey during a time when there was a period of political unrest. She mentioned that it was often dangerous to be out in the street. On the positive side, she was able to visit some countries in Europe, notably France, Germany, and Italy through hitching rides on USAF transport planes.
Ruth and Carl were married in 1960. She enjoyed being a stay-at-home mom while her son was very young. Later in life, she and Carl played the role of soccer mom for their granddaughter, who spent many late afternoons at Carl and Ruth’s home in Pflugerville playing games and participating in other activities with Ruth.
Ruth had a varied career in nursing that included being an assistant nursing director at a university hospital, an assistant professor at a community college, and one of the nursing supervisors at a Texas state school for the mentally handicapped.
Most recently, she along with Carl became interested in civic activities and politics, mostly on a local level in Pflugerville. She was an alternate delegate to the 2012 Texas State Republican Convention in Fort Worth.
Starting a Life Together