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Ruth Koch

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Ruth Koch Obituary
Ruth T. Koch, 95, passed away peacefully on December 20, 2017. Beloved wife of the late Reverend Arthur R. Koch, cherished mother of Eloise Hirschey and Ann (Robert) Reiland, dear sister to Grace Sarring and the late Dorothy Hanford and loving aunt to many nieces and nephews. Ruth was first and foremost a pastor's wife, supporting Art in all he did while active in her own right in church activities. Music was a constant in Ruth's life. She played piano and organ, often accompanying Art, who had a beautiful tenor voice. Ruth was a teacher and began her career in 1948 at the Royal School in Honolulu, HI, starting the first class for hearing impaired children. After returning to the mainland, Ruth stayed home to raise her daughters. In 1960 she was recruited to be the first teacher of hearing impaired children for the Special Education District of Lake County, IL. Following a move to Springfield, IL in 1967, she was once again asked to teach a primary class of hearing impaired students, which she did until her retirement in 1982. Art retired in 1985 and they moved to Elgin where Ruth volunteered at Sherman Hospital and taught English As a Second Language at the Elgin YWCA, eventually becoming the program's Coordinator of Volunteers. To be closer to their daughters, Ruth and Art moved to Willowbrook, IL. Ruth enjoyed being with children and volunteered as a reader at Oak School in Hinsdale and Gower School in Darien. She cherished her 16 years as a preschool "grandma" at her church, First Congregational Church of Western Springs. Upon Art's death Ruth moved to Plymouth Place, her retirement community home of ten years, where she enjoyed serving as a pianist. She appreciated her many friends there, both residents and staff. A Memorial Service will be held on January 6, 2018 at 1:00 p.m. at Plymouth Place, 315 N. LaGrange Rd., LaGrange Park, IL 60526. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Plymouth Place (plymouthplace.org/giving), First Congregational Church of Western Springs (1106 Chestnut, Western Springs, IL 60558; wscongo.org/give) or One Great Hour of Sharing (United Church of Christ OGHS, Financial Service office, 700 Prospect Ave., Cleveland, Ohio 44115; onegreathourofsharing.org/donate).
Published in a Chicago Tribune Media Group Publication from Dec. 23 to Dec. 28, 2017
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