Ruthe M. (Williams) Olson, of Shrewsbury, died Sunday, July 24, 2016 in Shrewsbury Nursing & Rehabilitation Center. She was 96.
She was born April 15, 1920 in Bristol, Connecticut a daughter of the late John D. and Alice L. (Strout) Williams. Raised and educated in Worcester she was a graduate of the former Commerce High School with the class of 1938. Ruthe worked many years as a bookkeeper and secretary for Crandall Hicks Co. in Southborough.
During World War II she was active in various small theater groups, performing for service men at Fort Devens and Camp Edwards and also local bond rally's. After the war she appeared in performances with WPI Masque, Worcester Players Club and seven years with the YMCA Fireside Players. She participated as a student/actress with the Priscilla Beach Theater in Plymouth and toured the State of Kansas and Cripple Creek, Colorado with the Piper Players.
Ruthe was an RSVP volunteer serving in various areas throughout Worcester County, including the American Red Cross, first as volunteer then as an employee in the emergency services department. She participated in disaster relief efforts in Florida after Hurricane Andrew in August 1992 and in Des Moines, Iowa after the floods in June 1993. At home she responded to the March 1993 blizzard contributing to the disaster operation in Worcester.
She was a member of the former Chestnut Street Congregational Church and was a member of First Congregational Church in Shrewsbury. Ruthe was a member of the Order of the Eastern Star Artemas Ward Chapter #220 and Stella Chapter No. 3. She served as a former mother advisor to the Order of the Rainbow for Girls, Bancroft Chapter No. 70, AARP and the Francis Gardens Association.
Ruthe was an avid reader, a world traveler and enjoyed music, drama, gardening and above all time with her cherished family.
In addition to her parents she is predeceased by her daughter, Pamela J. Olson who died November 17, 2006 and siblings, J. Howard Williams, Philip G. Williams and Elizabeth N. Noonan.
She leaves her sons, Robert W. Olson and his wife, Tammy of Shrewsbury, Bruce N. Olson and his wife, Dee Dee of Charlton and Paul R. Olson and his wife Sharon of New Smyrna Beach, Florida; her grandchildren, Jessica, Dana, Nicole, Dalton, Sean and Eric Olson; also survived by many nieces and nephews.
Family and friends will honor and remember Ruthe's life by gathering at Heald & Chiampa Funeral Directors ~ The Sumner House, 5 Church Road, On the Common, Shrewsbury Center on Saturday, August 13th where Funeral Service will be celebrated at 11 a.m. Burial is private and there are no calling hours.
Memorials in her name may be made to the American Cancer Society, 30 Speen Street, Framingham, MA 01701.
Thank you for your support during this difficult time.
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