February 28, 1935 - September 14, 2016
Ruth Bracklein passed away peacefully on September 14, 2016 due to a stroke. She entered heaven with her family surrounding her and whispering words of comfort and gratitude for the wonderful woman she was. Ruth was predeceased by her beloved husband, Conrad Bracklein to whom she was married for 33 years, in 2012 and, her first husband, Frank Schork, of 13 years, in 1973.
Ruth overcame many hardships, but she endured and even flourished. Nothing could keep her optimism down. She cherished her family, friends and her faith and had a wonderful sense of humor.
Ruth was born and raised in Pittsfield, MA. She graduated from Bates College (Maine), with an RN degree. While working in New York, Ruth met Frank Schork and they married in 1960. In 1961, Frank accepted a job at Hewlett-Packard so the couple and their new baby, Suzanne, moved to Sunnyvale. They had two more children together, Geoff and Scott. Sadly, Frank passed away in 1973 and Ruth was left to raise three young children alone. This was challenging but Ruth never gave up. She went back to school, brushed up on her nursing skills and became a home health care nurse. In 1978, Ruth met Conrad Bracklein, a widower with two children. The couple quickly fell in love and were married in 1979 with all 5 of their teenage children in the bridal party. They added two rooms on to Ruth's house and the families moved in together.
Ruth's limitless energy and her contributions to the community were a constant source of inspiration to her friends and family. In 1999, she contracted a rare spinal disease that paralyzed her from her waist down. Even in a wheelchair Ruth remained spunky and strong. She learned how to drive a car using hand controls and she and Conrad continued to travel, attend two churches, sing and volunteer regularly. Ruth's faith was a big part of her life. She was a member of Saint Andrews Episcopal Church in Saratoga for 50 years and Bethel Lutheran Church in Cupertino for 37 years.
Ruth Bracklein is survived by her daughter, Suzanne Graeser (Los Altos), sons Geoff Schork (San Jose) and Scott Schork (Los Gatos) and her stepchildren, Beth Thorman (Castro Valley) and Carl Bracklein (Minnesota). She also had 11 grandchildren and 3 great grandsons. Ruth is also survived by her siblings in Pittsfield, MA, Jean Davis, Ray Tuggey and Caryl Tuggey.
We will deeply miss her smile, her unassuming way and her boundless love for all people. She left the world a better place.
A service celebrating Ruth's remarkable life will be held at Bethel Lutheran Church in Cupertino at 3 pm on October 1 . A reception will follow.
Donations in Ruth's name are being accepted for Bethel Lutheran Church, St. Andrews Episcopal Church and Heifer International. View the online memorial for Ruth Bracklein
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Published by San Jose Mercury News/San Mateo County Times on Sep. 21, 2016.