Mrs. John Ruth Answers Summons

Mrs. John A. Ruth died at her home on East Main street, Astoria, on Wednesday between four and five p.m., after ailing for over a year. Her death was hastened by an attack of influenza, which her weakened system was not able to withstand. During this time of illness Mrs. Ruth was waited on by her husband and daughter, Mary, assisted from time to time by others of the family. It was hoped that she would improve in health with the coming spring.

Mrs. Ruth, as Sarah Jane King, was born in York County, Pa., May 31, 1857, and died Feb. 11, 1920, aged 62 years, 8 months and 10 days. She was the oldest of a family of ten children born to John and Rebecca King and spent the first eighteen years of her life with her parents near the place of her birth, in Adams and York counties, Pa. She moved with the family to Astoria in the spring of 1876 and the following year was happily married to John A. Ruth. The ceremony was performed in the home of Joseph and Caroline Burgard, by Elder David Miller. To this union was born twelve children, eight of whom with her husband survive her. Cora Alice and Jesse died in infancy, Lizzie Rebecca at the age of six years and Charles Henry at the age of twenty years. Those living are Anna May Meyers of Outlock, Washington; Eva Merrill of Leroy, Kansas; George William, Maggie Ellen Miller, John Leroy, Nellie Olive Wherley, Harvey and Mary Louise, all of Astoria and vicinity. Besides these she is survived by sixteen grandchildren, two brothers, and three sisters, Henry King and Mrs. Margaret Vlite, of Macomb, Mrs. Emma Lybarger of Table Grove, Sylvester King, of East Moline, and Mrs. Ellen Wherley of Astoria, all in Illinois.

In Dec. 1881 Mr. and Mrs. Ruth united with the Church of the Brethren, being baptized in the Otter Creek near Table Grove. During all her family and community activities she has held fast to her faith and received much comfort from her religion. Mrs. Ruth spent her life and raised her family on farms near Leeseburg, Table Grove and in Mud Valley, removing to the present home in town eight years ago.

In the life of the departed wife and mother we find an example of faithfulness to the home. She always worked hard often when physically, scarcely able, in order that others might be happy. Her life was spent for others. She was always free to entertain and enjoyed the company of those who came into the home, both the members of the church and others. Often large crowds were made welcome and entertained in her home. Throughout long periods of illness she retained a remarkable degree of patience and fortitude.

With the death of Mrs. Ruth the community has lost a splendid and helpful woman, the husband a loving companion, and the children a kind and sympathetic mother. Although she suffered much during the last year she was resigned in a remarkable way through it all. All who came in touch with her life will miss her companionship and helpfulness.

Owing to the influenza in the home the services were partly private, and held in the home. Services were conducted by Elder S. S. Blough, her pastor, burial in the Woodland cemetery on Friday afternoon.

“O happy soul, be thankful now, and rest!
Heaven is a goodly land;
And God is love; and those he loves are blest;
Now thou dost understand
The least thou hast is better than the best
That thou dists hope for; now upon thine eyes.
The new life opens fair;
Before thy feet the blessed journey lies
Through homelands everywhere;
And Heaven to thee is all a sweet surprise.”


Published in the Argus-Search Light on 2/18/1920

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