Ruth Howell (1916-2010) Obituary

IMG_6602_2Ruth Howell was born in November 1916 in Houstonia, Mo., to Grace (Montgomery) and John Herring, and died peacefully of natural causes Saturday, Feb. 13, 2010, in San Luis Obispo. After attending secretarial school in Sedalia, Mo., she worked for the US Department of Agriculture in Nevada, Mo., and then the Department of War. She was stationed in Midland, Texas, as a secretary in a hospital for “shell shocked” soldiers. There, she and William Robert “Bill” Howell, Army Air Corps Lieutenant from Nevada, Mo., became engaged. They married in Long Beach, Calif., February 6, 1944, and their daughter, Janet was born in 1945. They moved to Lakewood, Calif., and their son, Mark was born in 1950. Ruth and Bill helped found Lakewood First Presbyterian Church, where she taught Sunday school. She volunteered for the Community Hospital of Long Beach for over 40 years and helped run the gift shop. In 2002, Ruth moved to San Luis Obispo and enjoyed living at the Palms, then Garden Creek Assisted Living. Ruth loved family, children, music, art, traveling, sewing and gardening. She was an active, involved and beloved mother and grandmother. Her engaging sense of humor earned her many friendships over her long lifetime, and her youthful spirit was reflected by the fact that her hair never turned gray. Ruth is survived by her daughter, Jan Howell (Steven) Marx of San Luis Obispo; son, William Mark (Sonia) Howell of Lakewood; grandchildren Joe (Amy) Marx of Ketchum Idaho, Claire Fisher of San Luis Obispo, Emma (Travis) Smith of Long Beach and Marie Howell of Santa Barbara; step-grandson, Mitchell Benjamin; great-grandchildren Ian Fisher, Ethan Marx, Abel Marx and Lucas Green; sister, Mary Helen French of San Diego; as well as numerous nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her husband of 40 years, Bill; brother, John Herring; sister, Louise Butts; and cousin, Dorothy Cronk. A memorial will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 27, 2010, at Garden Creek Assisted Living, 73 Broad St. in San Luis Obispo. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to Hospice Partners of the Central Coast, 277 South St. Ste. R, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401, or Central Coast Memorial Society, P.O. Box 679, San Luis Obispo, CA 93406.

Leave a Reply