Ruby Lois (Ellenberger) Stewart went home to be with her Lord and Savior on October 3, 2021, surrounded by family. Ruby was born in Wiley, Colorado, on January 22, 1931, the youngest of five children born to Aaron and Addie Ellenberger. Ruby enjoyed growing up on a farm where she had duties such as herding sheep and helping make large meals for harvest workers.
Ruby and her family moved to Washington State when Ruby was a teen. She attended Garfield High School. Her family then moved to Sultan, Washington, and Ruby graduated from Sultan High School in 1948.
After graduation, Ruby moved to Seattle with her older sister and worked as a secretary for a development company in the Smith Tower, responsible for building the Northgate and South Center Malls.
Ruby also enjoyed attending the First Baptist Church and sang in their choir. One Sunday she met a handsome young man, Warren Stewart, at church. Their first date, a picnic with friends at Volunteer Park, took place later that afternoon. Their second date was roller skating, but they spent the entire time holding each other up as neither of them had roller skating skills.
Ruby and Warren were married on January 1, 1950, a snowy day in Seattle, Washington. The newly married couple spent their first night by a farmer’s stove after becoming lodged in a snow bank while traveling to their honeymoon destination of Harrison Hot Springs in British Columbia, Canada.
Ruby’s greatest ambition was to be a loving wife and mother. She fulfilled that calling with grace and wisdom as she raised their five children, Priscilla, Paul, Angela, Bonnie and Elise. Ruby also served as a pastor’s wife during many of those years. She faithfully played the piano for the church services. Ruby also had a beautiful singing voice, often filling in the harmony parts.
In 1962, Ruby sang in the choir for the Seattle World’s Fair. Music continued to be an important part of her life, and she taught piano lessons in her home.
Ruby and Warren moved to Kent, Washington, to give their children an opportunity to grow up in more of a country environment. They had a large organic garden with a wide variety of vegetables and berries and animals. Ruby’s summer activities included organic gardening, canning many jars of fruit to feed her growing family, and garden club meetings. Year around, Ruby faithfully drove her children to numerous music lessons, dancing lessons and school activities, often multiple for each child during a week.
After her children were grown, Ruby returned to school and ultimately received a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Washington in the late 1980s. Ruby used her counseling skills as a Stephen’s minister to support family members, friends, church attendees and even patients through her hospital volunteer activities.
Ruby was a devoted follower of Jesus Christ, a faithful woman of prayer and a friend to many. She had a quiet and loving spirit. Ruby shared the love of Christ that flowed out of her heart and into the lives of others. Warren referred to Ruby as a Proverbs 31 woman, virtuous, whose price was above rubies.
Ruby had many artistic gifts such as sewing, knitting, painting, and decorating. Many of her creations she generously gave as gifts to loved ones.
Ruby was proceeded in death by her dear husband, Warren, on August 31, 2009, her parents, brothers Roy and William Carroll, and sisters Opal and Jessie.
Ruby is survived by her children and their spouses: Priscilla Becker and her husband, Edward, of Yakima, Washington; Paul Stewart and his wife, Anna, of Cle Elum, Washington; Angela Stewart and her husband, Scott, of Kent, Washington; Bonnie Foxley and her husband, Bryan, of Woodinville, Washington; and Elise Ostrander and her husband, Vance, of Tacoma, Washington. She is also survived by her 12 grandchildren: Michael, Jeremy, Daniel, Amy, James, Austin, Julianne, Allison, Melanie, Collin, Lauren and Luke and her great grandchildren: Ty, Madison, Bella, Kaleb, Ruby, Patrick, Adelyn, Brooklyn, Colton, Everett, Peter, Oliver, Jaxson, Cora, Lucy, Alie and Ayla. Additionally, Ruby is survived by her sister-in-law, Lucille Ellenberger, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Ruby has fought the good fight, finished the race and has kept the faith!
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