1933 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
It is with deep and heavy sadness that we announce the death of Peter Ruiz, who passed away October 9,2016 at Bakersfield Heart Hospital.
He was 83 years old and was born in Gaddoa Colorado in 1933. Pete moved with his large family of 9 siblings to Lomita California when he was just 3 years old. He graduated from Narbonne High School and attended Harbor Junior College.
He served in the US Army in Japan- as an Engineer Supply Specialist and was Honorably Discharged with a National Defense medal, Korean Service medal, United Nations Service medal and Meritorious Unit Commendation. Soon after returning from Japan he went to work for Union Oil Company at their refinery in Wilmington California. Pete retired in 1987 after 33 years and moved from San Pedro to Bodfish California with his wife Shirley. Pete lost Shirley in 2000 after 39 years of marriage.
Pete lost most of his eyesight over the last few years due to macular degeneration and that kept him from doing the things he loved, like getting into his motor home and going up to the mountains, down to the lake or up on the Kern river. He was an explorer of the back trails where he would find good branches he could make into walking sticks. He liked to search for arrowheads, rattlesnakes, and cool rocks. He wasn't a naturalist but he loved the outdoors and the warmer the weather, the better he liked it.
Everyone liked Pete. He always had a positive attitude and was a wealth of knowledge when it came to mechanical things, the history of the Sierra Nevada range and the Mojave Desert. For over 50 years he camped and rode dirt bikes all through the Sierras and southern California desert. He could fix anything. Even with his failing eyesight, he could still do so much through his persistence and memory of how things worked.
He is survived by his son Peter Ruiz Jr, daughter-in-law Melissa and granddaughters Katie, Jessie and Adrienne, his siblings Susie Garnica and Frank Ruiz and his many nieces and nephews.
Pete Senior will be missed, he leaves behind the important lessons of honesty, integrity, hard work and pursuing your passions. He also leaves behind some Pete-isms that will live on and continue to remind us of him:
I've done worse than that to my eyeballs
You don't know from a hot rock
A good job is a great way to support your hobbies
Don't get all puddly eyed
Fine as frog hair
Published in Bakersfield Californian on Oct. 30, 2016
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