Ruth Francis Strickler was born on August 22, 1922 in Albany, WI, the daughter of Maude and Warden Francis. She graduated from Monroe High School in 1940, and the Groves-Barnhardt Business College in Madison in 1941. She was employed as secretary to the president of Commonwealth Telephone in Madison until she was married in 1945. Ruth was the devoted wife of Palmer “Butch” Strickler for the past 69 years, and lived in New Glarus.
Ruth was a person who loved life to the fullest. She grew up singing, dancing, and playing the piano, and continued to enjoy her music until her last days. In fact, last Memorial Day she fulfilled a childhood dream by conducting the Stars and Stripes Forever with the Gulf Coast Symphony Orchestra to a standing ovation. There was rarely a person she met who didn’t find her to be a gentle spirit. For decades, Ruth worked in the family business, Strickler’s Market, as a bookkeeper.
The game of golf came naturally to Ruth, which she learned from her father and brother. In the summer time, she and Butch enjoyed their tee times at 11:52 every Sunday, and during the fall and winter she was an avid Badger and Packer fan. More recently, Ruth would look forward to her birthday and the traditional family croquette tournament. She loved to play cards, and particularly loved her bridge club dates, as well as Tuesday morning coffee with the girls. Ruth was a great friend to many people, and she naturally shared her smile with anyone she met.
She is survived by her husband, Palmer “Butch” Strickler; children Jane Strickler (Kip Whitehead), Verona, WI; John Strickler and Julie Strickler, New Glarus; grandchildren Kimberly (Todd) Parizo, Fitchburg, and Matthew Doepke, Minneapolis, MN; and great grandson Zachary Parizo.
She was preceded in death by her parents, brother Leo Francis, and infant son.
Ruth was a member of Swiss United Church of Christ, New Glarus, where she served on the Consistory for two terms; a 50-year member of the Order of Eastern Star; the American Legion Auxiliary; and former member of the UCC Choir.
Her family was the most important part of her life. Ruth passed away on July 11th at Agrace HospiceCare, and she will be missed by all who knew her.
A gathering of relatives and friends will be held from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, July 15, 2014 at the Zentner-Beal Funeral Home, 29 Sixth Ave., New Glarus, WI.
Memorials are suggested to Agrace HospiceCare, Inc.
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