Ruth P. (Wilson) Ritchie, 89, a long time resident of Salem, NH passed away peacefully on Thursday, December 19 at the Parkland Medical Center in Derry, NH after a brief illness.
She was the daughter of the late Fred and Gertrude (Pye) Wilson. She was born and raised in Methuen, MA. She attended Methuen schools and graduated from Edward F. Searles High School in 1942. Upon graduation she was offered a secretarial job in Washington, DC but had to turn it down because she wasn’t eighteen. After graduation she worked at Bolta Rubber in Lawrence for several years before starting her family.
On a dare from her best friend, Audrey, she called Peter Ritchie, Jr while he was at home in North Andover, MA on military leave from the Navy. They started dating and they married in 1944. They were married for 29 years before he passed away suddenly. She was a devoted wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother and caretaker to those around her.
Ruth belonged to Easter Star #57 in Salem, NH for over 57 years and was affiliated with numerous Veterans organizations during the years. She was a life long Red Sox fan and rarely missed a game. Her interests included family, cooking, reading, crosswords, Bingo, playing cards, bowling, watching classic movies, taking long rides in the car and spending her summer vacations on Newfound Lake.
Ruthie will be forever remembered by her family. She was their inspiration, the one they turned to, the one who listened and the one who supported them. So much of who they became was because of how she raised them, the examples and values she set and the guiding words she offered. She helped each of her children and grandchildren to believe in themselves and set goals to shape their lives into happy and fulfilling ones.
Her family will never forget the impact she had on their lives. She is survived by one son, two daughters, two grandchildren and two great grandchildren.
Son: Robert Ritchie and his wife Beth of Powhatan, VA (formerly of Merrimack, NH)
Daughters: Cheryl Ritchie of Salem, NH and Teddi Ritchie of Sandown, NH
Grandchildren: Sue Peters and her husband Tom of Milford, NH and Douglas LeSage and his wife Heather of Salem, NH, Great Grandchildren: Alexis and Todd Peters of Milford, NH
She is also survived by several nieces, nephews, cousins and her faithful companion and protector, Max who would sit quietly at her side and lavish her with wet kisses whenever he had the chance.
She was predeceased by: Husband: Peter Ritchie, Jr. (1973), Granddaughter: Kimberly (1988)and Brother: Robert Wilson (2007)
Her family would especially like to thank the staff at Parkland Medical Hospital for providing a caring and comforting atmosphere for her and a heartfelt appreciation goes to our extended family at Salem NH Fire Department for all their support and help. In addition, they would also like to give special thanks to Carol Aufiero (Salem, NH), Jennifer Lowe (Lowell, MA), April Vitulli (Salem, NH), Kathy Pratt (Salem, NH) and Nancy Burke (Haverhill, MA) for their frequent visits.
Calling hours will be held Monday, Dec. 23, 2013 from 3-7 PM at the Douglas & Johnson Funeral Home, 214 Main St, Salem, NH 03079. Funeral services will be Tuesday, Dec. 24th at 9AM at the funeral home. Burial will follow in the Salem Veterans Cemetery.
Memorial donations may be made to Salem Caregivers, PO Box 2316, Salem, NH 03079 or to Silverthorne Adult Daycare, 23 Geremonty Drive, Salem, NH 03079