Ruth Ufkes was born on a farm east of Basco, Illinois, on August 7, 1931, the daughter of Fred and Tena (Janssen) Ufkes. She graduated from Carthage High School, Carthage College, and received her master’s degree in organ performance from Northwestern University. She was a strong believer in education for women.
Ruth was a music teacher in public schools in the Chicago area from the 1960s until her retirement in the 1980s. She was also a church organist and choir director for her church and was a member of Trinity Lutheran Church in Des Plaines. Music was an integral part of Ruth’s life, but she also enjoyed gardening and cooking—including her raspberry bread. She loved to share her health-conscious recipes and her colorful life experiences with her nieces and nephews. A long-time fitness advocate and attendee at her local aerobics center, she spent her lunch hours at work walking instead of “wasting time in the teacher’s lounge.”
After a visit with Aunt Ruth, one of her young nieces said in a fitting tribute “when I get that age, I want to be just like Aunt Ruth.”
Ruth was preceded in death by her parents; brothers, John, Alvin, LeRoy, and Herb; and two nieces, Connie Neill and Nancy Ufkes. She is survived by nieces and nephews, the families of her deceased brothers, who all will miss their beloved and one-of-a-kind Aunt Ruth.
Funeral services will be held at 2:00 P.M. Saturday, January 12, 2019, at Printy Funeral Home in Carthage with burial to follow in the Immanuel Lutheran Church Cemetery near Basco. Printy Funeral Home of Carthage is in charge of arrangements.
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