Some obituaries say, “Our sister departed this earthly life,” or “Our brother passed away and is now dancing with the Lord,” or “Our Mom fell into the arms of her loving Savior.”
But, listen to this! Our Mom, Ruth Jeanette (Smith) Catlett Clark, was made whole again on Nov. 28, 2018!
After 13 years of being given the diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease, our Mom began to see, hear, and smile again and to know those she loved. And to live in a place prepared for her in our Father’s house.
Ruth was born on May 14, 1930, in Mansfield, Ohio, to her parents, Dorothy Louella (Reinhart) Smith and Paul Newton Smith, also of Mansfield/Springmill. She had three siblings, sister, Esther (Smith) Marles Burkepile, Dwight Smith, and Victor P. Smith, all who preceded her in passing.
She attended Mansfield schools, including Mansfield Senior, graduating in 1948. The following year, she married our father, Robert Floyd Catlett, who also graduated from Mansfield Senior in 1948. Bob and Ruth had four children and continued to live on Poth Road in Mansfield until 1974.
Ruth’s first job out of high school was with Lumbermens Mutual Insurance near the Westbrook Country Club. After her children were born, Ruth took a job at the John Sherman Junior High School cafeteria, but soon found herself working in various positions for the Richland County Board of Elections, where she became actively involved in the Ohio Republican Party. She even met and posed for a picture with Richard Nixon and Spiro Agnew at the 1972 Republican National Convention.
In 1974, Ruth and Bob moved to Springfield, Tennessee, where Bob served as the first plant manager for a new Tappan Stove Company manufacturing plant. Bob passed away in 1996. In 1998, Ruth married W. Bentley Clark, of Guntersville, Tennessee. Although both vowed that any children born of that union would be raised Methodist, the two managed to spend 12 happy years of their senior lives together.
Ruth was preceded in passing by her son, Gregory Allen Catlett in 2010; and grandson Joshua Baldridge Catlett. She will be sorely missed by the children she leaves on earth, James Robert (Mary, 'nee Robertson) Catlett of Mansfield, Douglas McKee (Patti Jo, 'nee Hofer) Catlett of Foley, Alabama, and Suesan Monks Catlett (Terry Keith) Patton of Whitt, Texas. Ruth is also survived by her grandchildren, James Paul Catlett, Sadie Renee Catlett, Daniel Robert (Ashlee, 'nee Meeker) Catlett, Geneva (M. Calvin) Monks Corwin, Chessie (Andrew Michael Kelly) Monks-Kelly, Michael Kelly, Katie Jo Catlett Miller, Andrew Robert Catlett, and Joseph Keith Catlett; and four great grandchildren, Snow Ruth Corwin, Aurora Gwenivere Corwin, Lucas Allen Catlett and Natalee Dawn Catlett. She is also survived by a brother-in-law, Richard Catlett of Circleville Ohio; and sister-in-law, Linda Smith.
Before Alzheimer’s, Ruth enjoyed her life, loved her children, made many neighbor kids feel at home, and doted on her grandchildren. All of us benefited from her amazing skills as a seamstress and her sometimes breathtaking ability to follow other cars very closely. She was a source of joy and, when needed, comfort to us all and will be dearly missed.
A service celebrating Ruth’s life will take place on Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018 at 10 a.m. at the Ontario Home of Wappner Funeral Directors, 100 S. Lexington-Springmill Rd. with Pastor Terry Patton, of Whitt, Texas, officiating. Friends may call on Tuesday from 4 to 7 p.m. and from 9 a.m. Wednesday until the time of the service. Memorial contributions may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association.
Words of comfort may be expressed to the family at www.wappner.com.