Ruth Grimes Obituary

Ruth Thompson Grimes
Ruth Grimes
Ruth Thompson Grimes

August 16, 1915 - January 26, 2010
Born in Des Moines, IA
Resided in Iowa City, IA
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Ruth Thompson Grimes, 94, of Oaknoll Retirement Residence, Iowa City, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, January 26, 2010. Visitation with family members will be from 9:00-10:00 am, on Wednesday, February 10, 2010 at the Westover Chapel in Des Moines, followed by a memorial service and burial in the Woodland Cemetery.

Ruth Thompson Grimes was born August 16, 1915 in Des Moines, daughter of Anna Cram Thompson and Frederick Oliver Thompson. She graduated from the Emma Willard School in Troy, NY, and then attended the University of Iowa. On March 29, 1937, she and Howard T. Grimes were married. They made their home in Evanston, IL, where they resided for over 60 years. In 1973, they purchased a cabin near Allenspark, CO, where they summered for many years. Following her husband's death in 1999, Ruth moved to the Oaknoll Retirement Residence in Iowa City.

Devoted to her family, Ruth was very actively involved in many community organizations. Ruth was a lifelong participant in the PEO Club with its focus on young women's education. She was a 60-year member of the First Congregational Church in Evanston and a key organizer of the annual rummage sale. She was a long term member and for many years president of the Evanston Garden Club. She established and maintained a much-loved community flower garden off Central Avenue in Evanston. As a member of the Evanston Historical Society, she served as a docent at the Evanston Lighthouse. She volunteered with The Cradle, the Infant Welfare Society, the Infant Day Care Center, and the Northwestern Settlement House in Evanston. For many years she actively supported the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago. She was a counselor at the Harms Woods Day Camp for underprivileged children, and she was a Girl Scout leader. In Colorado, she was a 20-year member of the Kelley House, a community-service organization.

Ruth will be remembered for her wonderful generosity of spirit and her graciousness. Ruth had a passion for gardening, and she was never happier than when working the soil and planting. She loved creating dish gardens and was known for her rock-collecting.

She is survived by daughters, Ruth (Dale) Gingerich of Carmel, CA, Marilyn Grimes of Taos, NM, Susan (John) Dotson of Carmel, CA; grandchildren, Brian Gingerich, Jane (Darwin) Mesch, Barb (Keith) Schweitzer, Joan (Glenn) Siders, Grant Gingerich, Brendan (Sara Anne) Dotson, Adam Dotson, Caitlin Dotson; six great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandson.

She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Howard; two sisters, Anna Cram (Nancy) Thompson, Agnes Louise Thompson Stack; one brother, Frederick Oliver (Fritz) Thompson, Jr.; one granddaughter at birth, and one great-grandson.

Memorials can be directed to gardening and landscaping projects at Oaknoll Retirement Residence in Iowa City.


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Westover Funeral Home
6337 Hickman Road
Des Moines, IA US 50322
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
9:00 AM - 10:00 AM
Westover Funeral Home
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
10:00 AM
Woodland Cemetery
Woodland & MLK
Des Moines, IA US 50312
Wednesday, February 10, 2010