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Obituaries » Ruth E. Wellington

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May 9, 1925 - August 30, 2022

A service to honor Ruth’s life will be held on Saturday, October 8, 2022, at 2:00 p.m. at Joldersma & Klein Funeral Home, 917 S, Burdick, St. Kalamazoo. Friends may call on the family one hour prior to the service, beginning at 1:00 p.m. at the funeral home. Ruth will be laid to rest next to her husband at Mt. Ever Rest Memorial Park South. Memorial contributions may be made to Kalamazoo Loaves and Fishes in c/o the funeral home.

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Age 97, passed away on Tuesday morning, August 30, 2022. Ruth was born in Watervliet, Michigan on May 9, 1925, the daughter of Joseph and Alda (Nedry) Kubicek. On July 1, 1950, she married Maurice Robert “Bob” Wellington, who preceded her in death in 2004. Ruth worked for many years as a school crossing guard for the Kalamazoo Police Department. She loved kids and volunteered both as a Cub Scout Den Mother and Room Mother for the elementary school. In addition to her six children, many neighborhood kids, as well as friends of her own children, considered her a second mom; she was affectionately known as “Miz Well.” Her nieces and nephews also looked to her as a mother figure and often sought her out for advice and a listening ear. She was a great cook, with frequent requests for her cinnamon toast, caramel dumplings and lasagna. Being an animal lover, Ruth owned several pets through the years, mostly cats and dogs. Walking their dogs through the neighborhood with her good friend, Phyllis Curtis, was a favorite daily task. She and Bob enjoyed square dancing for many years and traveled extensively as well. Ruth even trekked to Europe and Mexico over multiple summers with a local church youth group. She camped alongside them, drove a van and mainly worked to keep the volunteers fed as they labored to complete assigned projects. She never considered herself a leader but one friend commented that she was a leader in the background; always calm and friendly while getting the job done. Ruth generously volunteered her time and talents locally also, including the Ladies’ Library Association, the Rotary Club, reading to 4th graders and an annual church rummage sale. Ruth was a definitive ‘people person;’ dropping in (unannounced of course!) on family and friends regularly for coffee and a visit. She also loved going out for breakfast. Most will tell you that she was opinionated–and hilarious! Bob and Ruth were phenomenal parents and grandparents. They were loving and supportive in various tangible ways. No matter the event–school or church programs, T-ball, basketball, music recitals or plays–they were in attendance. They also helped their adult children with car repairs and home updates, moving, babysitting and generally pitching in with whatever was needed. Ruth also demonstrated her love by making things–sweaters, hand sewn items, spectacular cakes…the list goes on and on. She knit a myriad of sweaters for loved ones and also sewed up many a creative costume for several kids and then grandkids. When birthdays rolled around, she created bakery-worthy cakes, decorated according to their party theme. Ruth is survived by her children, Brad Wellington, Matt (Pam) Wellington, Rob Wellington, Melissa (Jeff) Johns; son-in-law, Chris Keller; grandchildren, Amanda, Kelly, Nicole, Paul, BJ, Kate, Jason, Tori, Betsy, Nate, Travis and Blair; several great-grandchildren; several nieces and nephews; and many friends. She was preceded in death by her parents; daughters, Cynthia Overacker and Karen Keller; daughter in law, Lori Wellington; son in law, Richard Overacker; her sister, Helen Szymczak; and a brother, Carl Kubicek.