Ruth Marguerite Morton
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10/18/1910 - 12/29/2012
Ruth Marguerite Eldon was born on a homestead farm near Brookville Indiana October 18, 1910, the third of four children. In her words, "I was so long in coming they (the family) realized they would have to cook supper for the doctor - - . The doctor was pleased as he seldom got home cured ham. Mother was having such a hard time that the doctor finally had her squat at the side of the bed and every time she had a contraction, she was to bear down. I came in no time."
Her mother died when she was 14, and her father hired a young widow with two small children to help the family. He soon married her; in Ruth's words, "Her name was Martha and she was 11 years older than me. She wanted us to call her 'mother' and this upset me. On the last day of school it was a custom for the family to take a picnic lunch and we all had a picnic on the school grounds. That day I went from family to family asking if they could use a hired girl. Mrs. Raymond Nuttey agreed to pay me $3.00 a week. They picked me up on Sunday and that is the last time I remember seeing my father. An Aunt living in Phoenix had promised my mother she would always look after me, and if I would like to go, she would take me. I didn't have much choice as I had no idea what I'd do after I graduated, so I packed my clothes and took the train. The trip took four days. After graduation I went to Gregg's Business College. My Aunt decided to upgrade our living condition and bought a lot on 11th Avenue. The Mortons lived next door. My girlfriends went to the Methodist church so I met Billy before we moved. There was a big party coming up. One day I heard Billy and his mother discussing the party. She said, "why don't you take Ruth?" He said, "she can't swim, she can't dance and she can't play tennis." I got busy. I went to the YWCA and took swimming lessons. A girlfriend taught me to play tennis and one of the young men in the MYF taught me to dance. We went together for three years. We put on our own wedding. Neither of us knew about how to go about it, and I was so ignorant in so many ways. Billy's uncle, Hubert furnished a lovely three tier wedding cake. His uncle Charley had a flower shop and had orchids flown in from Hawaii, something unheard-of in those days. So we had the nicest flowers. Billy printed the invitations. The MYF put on the reception at the church." To this union two children were born Donald E. in 1934 and Rosemary Ruth in 1939.
The family moved to Auburn in 1938. Ruth worked at various jobs, raised two children, did volunteer work after retirement with the Red Cross, helping servicemen connect with their families, and with the Placer County food pantry. Her life in Auburn spanned 65 years before moving to Mesa View Assisted Living in Battlement Mesa in 2003, to be nearer her son. She fell seriously ill December 9, 2012 and was hospitalized until December 26, 2012 when she was discharged to return to Mesa Vista under hospice care. The next to the last day of her life she went to lunch in the dining room with the other residents, and returned to her room for her afternoon nap. She never woke up. She passed away quietly in her sleep December 29, 2012 of congestive heart failure at the age of 102 years, two months and 11 days.
She is survived by her son, Don of Parachute Colorado; her daughter, Rosemary of Chico California; three grandchildren, and two great-grand children. The hallmarks of her life were her fierce independent nature, her winning smile, her deep faith and her determination to make the most of every situation and she will be remembered by all who knew her for her winning smile.
Published in Gold Country Media Newspapers on Jan. 8, 2013