Ruth Alter
1923 - 2021
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Ruth Alter
January 1, 1923 - December 25, 2020
Longtime Resident of San Jose
Ruth Alter lived her life for her family and friends and always with a smile on her face. She was so generous with her love and support for others. Ruthie, her childhood nickname, was born in Des Moines, Iowa to a family of six brothers and over fifty first-cousins. A large part of her childhood was spent growing up in Bellefaire, an orphanage in Cleveland, Ohio. Bellefaire instilled in her self-reliance and brought out her inner strength, community spirit, humility, and charity. Our mother moved to San Francisco during WW2 and met and married Bernard for what became a long and prosperous marriage. They lived first in Chicago then moved to San Jose, CA in 1958. In Santa Clara County, they started and built the Yardstick, a drapery and fabric business that is still thriving. After retirement, and the passing of her dear husband, she moved to Laguna Woods, CA, where she enjoyed the community atmosphere. Ruth was philanthropic and active in her love for others and, in turn, was loved by all who knew her.

Ruth, Mom and Grandma, is survived by her children Gary, Marlene, Jack and his wife Sharon, and her four grandchildren Samantha, Alexandra, Danielle, and Meital. She leaves behind her many friends and extended family.

Ruth was always so interested in helping children, especially orphans, underprivileged, and children with learning disorders. If you wish to honor her memory, our family asks that you make a tax-free donation to Bellefaire JCB, which did so much to influence her life.

Or send checks to:
c/o Jill Sadowsky
22001 Fairmont Blvd.
Shaker Heights, OH 44118

A grave-site service was held at Home of Peace Cemetery in San Jose, CA on Wednesday December 30. The recorded service can be viewed by contacting Jack at or 408-591-1630.

View the online memorial for Ruth  Alter

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Published in San Jose Mercury News/San Mateo County Times on Jan. 3, 2021.
Graveside service
Home of Peace Cemetery
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