Ruth Boyd, 95, died Sept. 28, 2012, in Cabell Huntington Hospital, after a short illness.
She was born Sept. 6, 1917, the second child of Joseph and May Simon, in Lock Haven, Pa.
In addition to her parents, Ruth was predeceased by her husband of 54 years, Thomas Boyd; sister, Mary Kell; nephew, Joseph Kell; and great-nephew, Scott Gordon.
She is survived by three daughters, Mary Boyd and husband, John Henning, of Elkins, Karen Mills and husband, Jay, of Kingsport, Tenn., and Tina Wagoner and husband, Carl, of Lexington, Ky. From 1961-1962, Ruth and Tom were parents to an exchange student from Germany, Christine Rhode-Juechtern, who also survives. Also surviving are six grandchildren, Jamie Mills of Raleigh, N.C., Caitlin Henning of Arlington, Va., Ainsley and Colleen Wagoner of Lexington, Ky., Sarah Mills of Charlotte, N.C., and Colin Henning of Elkins. She is also survived by many nieces and nephews and their families.
Ruth graduated from Lock Haven State Teachers' College, now Lock Haven University, where she majored in French and Latin with English as a minor. She started taking piano lessons as a young child and organ lessons starting at the age of 19. She moved to Huntington in 1945 when she accepted a job at Trinity Episcopal Church as parish secretary. In 1946, she also became the organist at Trinity, where she played for more than 40 years. From 1971 to 1985, Ruth worked as a morning receptionist and membership secretary at the Huntington Museum of Art. In 1974, she began daily swimming at the YMCA, where she eventually became a member of the 1,000 mile club. She was a charter member of the Musical Arts Guild, a member of Huntington chapter of American Guild of Organists, sang in the Choral Union at Marshall University and was a volunteer for the American Cancer Society's Reach to Recovery program. She was active up until the time of her death, playing the piano accompanying the Woodlands Warblers and playing for religious services and teas at Woodlands.
Ruth was a gifted musician and linguist, devoted wife and mother, fabulous applesauce maker, graceful swimmer, lifelong Democrat, lover of Bach, Gershwin and Sinatra, Marshall fan and good friend to many many people. She will be sorely missed by all.
At her request, her body has been given to the Marshall University School of Medicine. A memorial service is being planned for Saturday, Nov. 10, at Trinity Episcopal Church at 3 p.m. A reception will be conducted afterward in the church dining room, where the family will receive friends.
Memorials in Ruth's name can be given to Trinity Episcopal Church, 520 11th St., Huntington, WV 25701, the Huntington YMCA, 935 10th Ave., Huntington, WV 25701 and the Marshall University Choral Union, in care of David Castleberry, School of Music and Theater, Marshall University, 25755.