Funeral services are set for Monday, August 20, 2012 at 1:00 PM at Goreville United Methodist Church, with Reverend Tim Woodard officiating. Interment will follow at Busby Cemetery in Goreville. A time of gathering for family and friends will precede the funeral service starting at 10:00 AM and will last until the service begins at 1:00 PM. Memorial donations may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association. Envelopes will be available at the church or may be sent c/o Blue Funeral Home, PO Box 411, Marion, IL 62959.
Ruth was born in Confederate, KY on September 17, 1931 to hard working tobacco & dairy farmers; James Rhyman & Mary America (Murphy) Gray.
Ruth is survived by her children, Marlene Walker & husband Tom Gagnon of Mahomet; and Mike & Sharon Walker of Goreville; step-children, Rhonda & Matt Summerland of Index, WA; and Janice Hume and her husband Randy of Champaign; grandchildren, Sgt. Raleigh Walker, Micki & Chad Colson of Vienna; great-grandchild, Walker Steven Paul Colson; brother, Retired Representative J.R. & Yvonne Gray of Benton, KY; sister-in-law, June Walker of Goreville and several nieces & nephews.
Ruth was preceded in death by her parents; 1st husband, Rolla Walker; 2nd husband, Roger Hume; siblings, Ann Guess, Winifred Guess and Gene Walker.
Ruth was named for an aunt, Ruth Murphy, who was a teacher in Western Kentucky whom passed away at a relatively young age. Mrs. Hume fulfilled her aunt’s destiny of teaching and encouraging her students to follow their dreams.
She and her sister, Ann Guess, waited tables at Land Between the Lakes Restaurant to be able to attend college. They both graduated from Murray State University. Ruth later received a Master’s Degree at SIU-C.
Her first teaching position was with Goreville High School in the early 1950’s where a cook introduced her to her future husband, Rolla Walker. They first resided in Brookport and later moved to Kevil, KY where she taught at Ballard Memorial High School. Here she worked until having children of her own. After her children began attending school, she went back to Murray State University, and later taught at Forestdale Elementary in Western, KY.
She and Rolla moved to Goreville in 1966 and bought back his family business, Walker Home Supply. She continued her teaching career in Goreville, first at the elementary level, then Title 1 and later became the first art teacher at Goreville High School. She and one of her closest friends, Pauline Billingsley, were the first sponsors of the Goreville Beta Club.
After the unexpected loss of her first husband, Rolla, she met and married Roger Hume. They spent many wonderful years together until his passing in 2003.
Ruth was always active in the community; becoming the first female member of the Goreville Ruritan Club. Never aspiring for recognition, she worked quietly in the background and was an instrumental member to numerous community events. Ruth helped organize the 4th of July Parade and the Christmas for Kids program (which is still ongoing after 30+ years.)
Her fellow employees at the schools, and customers at her own business, were her best friends. She never met a stranger and she never forgot where she came from. She loved people from all walks of life. For all of us fortunate enough to have known her as family, friend, co-worker, patron or teacher, let it be said, “She was a teacher with love and utmost sincerity.”
To sign the guest register book, visit www.bluefuneralhome.com.