RUFFRA, JOYCE, was born on February 18, 1928, and died on February 2, 2014, after a long and happy life.
She was preceded in death by Joe Ruffra, her loving husband of 46 years.
She is survived by her three children, Mike, Robin (married to Marc Leftwich) and Peggy (married to the late Jeff Lehman); and her grandchildren, Erin, Blayre, and Justin Leftwich, and Winston Lehman.
She was intellectually curious her whole life, and was an incredibly dynamic and energetic woman well into her eighties. Her passions included history, animals of all kinds but especially beagles and cats, art, reading, and the great outdoors. She could literally find philosophy in a rock.
Joyce was a native of Louisville and a passionate booster of all things pertaining to Kentucky. As a young mother she was a Girl Scout leader for both her daughters' troops and was active in the state Girl Scout leadership. She went back to college in her forties, got straight As, and graduated from University of Louisville, then worked in the family business, the Frankfort Candy and Tobacco Company. After "retiring," she served as a docent at Locust Grove, the Speed Art Museum, and the Louisville Zoo, and organized many trips around the country for the docents to visit zoos, aquariums, and nature preserves. She was also the vice president of the Saint Matthews Historical Society, and organized its programs for many years, including the Sunday lecture series.
A Mass will be held 9:30 a.m. Friday, February 7, 2014 at Epiphany Catholic Church, 914 Old Harrods Creek Rd., with reception to follow.
Donations may be made to the Louisville Zoo in Joyce's name. Ratterman Funeral Home, 3711 Lexington Rd., in St. Matthews is caring for arrangements.
Published in The Courier-Journal from Feb. 5 to Feb. 7, 2014