Lilian Jean Clare Ruth

Lilian Jean Clare Ruth


Born: August 2, 1924; Died: December 3, 2011

The family of Lilian Jean Clare Ruth are saddened to announce her passing on Saturday, December 3, 2011 at 9:15 a.m. at Shuswap Lake General Hospital with her family close at her side.

Born in Vancouver General Hospital, to Goldwyn and May Leach, Lilian became a pioneer resident of Salmon Arm.

Lilian married the late Donald Fred Ruth on August 10, 1943. Soon after her marriage they were separated when dad went overseas to serve his country, and mom then enlisted in the army and was stationed on Vancouver Island for 2 years. While dad was overseas he sent money home to mom to purchase their farm and orchard, which was located where the College, Recreation Centre and Arena now stand. After dad returned home the two planted apple trees and started their life together farming. From this mom started the first fruit stand in Salmon Arm. Many will remember the totem pole (erected in 1959) being a significant land mark where they sold all of their fruit that was grown on the farm. Thus, this was Totem Fruit Stand. The need for storage forced the building of a large root house which, when the weather got too cold the sales of the apples were then done out of the root house, which was also located on the Ruth property. Mom worked close alongside dad and they were always together supporting each other to make a living.

Life was not always easy as there was no car and mom would often have to walk down tank hill to town to Askews to get groceries, and then haul them arm in arm up the hill, and hope that someone would drive by to pick her up. Three boys were born, Gerald in 1947, and then 10 years later, Robin and then Derek. Family became very important to mom; they became a very close knit family with the boys contributing to the success of the farms, which became the foundation to the Pedro Gonzales Fruit & Garden Ltd. This is now run by the guidance of Robin and his sons, Dale and Greg, along with their wives, Jennifer and Nicole.

Mom was predeceased by her son Gerald in 1980, her beloved Donald in 1989, grandson Scotty and son Derek both in 2007; her brother, Bob Leach, and sister in law, Dorothy Bennett.

Lilian will be missed by her remaining family, Robin (Joyce), daughter in law, Donna; grandsons, Dale (Jennifer), Greg (Nicole), and the sparkle in her eye, her great grandchildren, Landon, Ella, Kendall, and Jenelle, “ We will miss you Grams”; as well as nieces, nephews and friends. Monday night dinners will never be the same.

A time of visitation will be held from Bowers Funeral Home on Thursday evening, December 8th at 7:30 p.m. with an opportunity for the friends and family to have a final “toast” in her memory.

A celebration of life service will follow on Friday afternoon from Bowers Funeral Chapel at 2 p.m. with Jack Bowers the funeral celebrant. Honors will be presented by comrades of the Royal Canadian Legion.

Interment will follow in the family plot at Mt. Ida Cemetery, with a reception following in the Mountainside room at Bowers, catered by friends of TOPS.

Pallbearers are Dale and Greg Ruth, Daniel Bullerwell, Shane Rozas, Leo Patenaude, Peter McGanon; Honorary bearers are Kaleigh Bullerwell, Shawn Clesson, Nicole, Jennifer, Landon, Ella, Kendall and Jenelle Ruth.

In lieu of flowers donations may be sent to the Canadian Cancer Society, Salmon Arm Unit, PO Box 3451, Salmon Arm, BC VIE 4S2

Email condolences may be sent to Lilian obituary at

Funeral arrangements are in the care of Bowers Funeral Home, Salmon Arm.

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