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Ruth Bernice (Estes) Maedel

1926 - 2020
Ruth Bernice (Estes) Maedel Obituary
(News story) Ruth Bernice Maedel, a longtime administrative assistant at Sylvania Schools, died Jan. 4 in the Abbey Delray assisted-living center in Delray Beach, Fla. She was 93.

She died of congestive heart failure in her sleep after a long bout with type-I diabetes, her daughter, Jill Myers, said. Mrs. Maedel had lived at Abbey Delray for 15 years, her daughter said.

Mrs. Maedel, whose maiden name was Estes, retired about 2001 from McCord Junior High School after many years as an administrative assistant to the school principal. She previously at different times worked at Hillview Elementary School and Timberstone Junior High School.

"She was so efficient...," Linda Hufford, a retired English teacher at Sylvania Schools, said. "She would quietly remind people of deadlines that were approaching. Everybody appreciated everything that she did."

"She was [also] very caring, thoughtful, and generous. When she saw a student in need, say of clothing, she would see to it that they get it. And she was very quiet about it... She was like a mother to us and a grandmother to the students," she said.

"She basically kept the schools running," Ms. Myers said. "At McCord, they called her Grandma Ruth. Everybody loved her... She was very helpful."

After Mrs. Maedel retired and moved to Florida, many of the school's teachers, former students, and their parents kept in touch with her until the day she died.

"They would call her on the phone and they would visit her. And she loved it. She remembered everybody and everything. Hanging out with those kids kept her young," her daughter said.

Mrs. Maedel especially enjoyed chaperoning students on ski trips. She also liked to cook and bake for special school occasions, her daughter said.

She was born in Toledo on May 7, 1926 to Luella and Charles Estes, the oldest of five siblings.

"Her giving came from her parents, who would always give even when they themselves did not have much. They had truly Christian hearts," her daughter said.

In 1944, Mrs. Maedel graduated from the former Libbey High School and then attended a community college for a couple of years.

After college, she was a secretary at the former Mayflower moving company in Toledo until she hired on as a secretary at Hillview Elementary in the mid-1950s.

In the late 1940s, she married Charles Maedel. He died in 2009.

In her free time, she preferred to be with her family.

She enjoyed swimming, water skiing, boating, snow skiing, and cross-country skiing. She also liked knitting, crocheting, and embroidering and was an avid gardener, mostly growing flowers.

Mrs. Maedel was a former longtime member of the Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, Toledo.

Her other memberships included what now is Pride of Toledo Chorus, Maumee, where she sang for many years.

She was preceded in death by three siblings.

Surviving are her son, James Maedel; daughters, Judith Troup and Jill Myers; sister, Alice Jacobs; seven grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren.

A Celebration of Life ceremony will be held early June in Toledo. Arrangements are pending.

The family suggests tributes to the American Diabetes Association.

This is a news story by Mike Sigov. Contact him at [email protected] or 419-724-6089.
Published in The Blade on Jan. 14, 2020
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