On Saturday, January 11, 2020, Ruth Sheridan passed away at Anchorage Providence Hospital. She was comforted in her passing by her daughter Lenore Sheridan, and her two housemates of forty-two years, Marion Brown and Lynne Prossick, Her three children survived her: Harry (Sandy), Lenore and Evelyn Sheridan; her grandchild Jack Sheridan and her great grandchildren, Logan and John. Her housemates, Lynne Prossick, Marion Brown and their sons Zachary and Benjamin Prossick-Brown, will miss her.
Ruth was born January 25, 1918 in Far Rockaway, New York. She was the second of four children and the last living child of Mabel Kantrowitz and Harry Weisman. Her father died when she was eleven. Her mother and aunts raised Ruth from that time.
Ruth was the only child to graduate from college (Brooklyn College). She left New York City, ventured to Chicago and began her career as a legal secretary. Ruth met her husband, Jack Sheridan, when he was stumping and recruiting members for the Industrial Workers of the World (Wobblies) on a soapbox in Bug House Square, Chicago. They married in 1944.
Ruth worked outside the home but it did not preclude long bike rides with her children and service to the Wobblies' cause of one union per industry, and equal pay for all.
When Jack died in 1967 Ruth became the sole wage earner for the family. By 1969, when the children were established in their own lives, Ruth embarked on a radical new adventure with her new companion. She became a "BO" and they rode the rails across the country, picked apples, and drove the Alcan Highway to Anchorage.
Ruth joined Higher Ground Consciousness Raising Collective and found her own strength and identity. She joined Lynne Prossick and Marion Brown in buying a home and they have lived cooperatively for almost forty-three years. The three founded Ships Shoes and Sealing Wax Feminist book store.
Serving in peace delegations to Nicaragua, and El Salvador, Ruth continued to support equality, justice and peace for all peoples. She was a co-founder of Alaskans for Peace and Justice and Alaskans Concerned about Latin America (ACALA).
Ruth leaves behind a rainbow of friends. A listening ear, acts of loving kindness and acceptance were Ruth's special gifts of friendship. Her commitment to justice and loving peace was both personal and political.
A celebration of life of Ruth Sheridan will be held at the Anchorage Unitarian Fellowship on her 102 birthday, Saturday, January 25, 2020 from 2:00-5:00p.m. There will be a reception following the service. In lieu of flowers, please make a donations to your favorite social justice organization.