Obituary: Ruth J. Sherman Jan. 1, 1933 – Oct. 8, 2017

RUTH J. SHERMAN Jan. 1, 1933  – Oct. 8, 2017

Ruth J. Sherman, a 57-year resident of Los Alamos, died peacefully at her home on October 8, 2017. Daughter of Morris and Bernice Joffe, Ruth was born in Chicago, Illinois on January 1, 1933. After Bernice passed away when Ruth was just seven years old, her father married Beatrice, whom Ruth came to know and love as her second mother.

Ruth was fiercely independent, highly intelligent, and passionate about learning. Although she aspired to be a doctor, she earned her degree in nutrition from Northwestern University. She became the Head Dietitian at Metropolitan Hospital in Cleveland and worked as a food researcher at Quaker Oats in Chicago, which she often described as the best job she ever had. She moved to Los Alamos in 1960 where she raised three children. Not content to sit at home, she earned a degree in Biology from the College of Santa Fe, and was a chemical technician at the Los Alamos National Laboratory and at LATA for many years. Upon her retirement, she continued her education, earning an MBA as an online student.

Ruth loved New Mexico and was an avid outdoorswoman; she enjoyed skiing, hiking, fishing, and playing tennis and golf, all of which she learned to do as an adult and pursued well into her later years. She instilled her love of the outdoors in her children, who recount many fond memories of family ski and backpack trips.

Ruth was passionately involved in civic activities. In 1967 she became the first president of the Los Alamos Arts Council and her proudest accomplishment was the effort she led in 1973 to preserve the lawn at Fuller Lodge when the area was being considered for construction of a new road. She loved Fuller Lodge and the town history it represented and she devoted her later years to volunteering at the Historical Museum and the Arts Center. Ruth was also an artist and a lover of art, proudly displaying paintings by friends and by her granddaughter in her home. She knitted, sculpted in wood and, in later years, became a frustrated painter herself.

Most of all, Ruth loved her family, including her children, grandchildren, and beloved springer spaniels. Ruth is predeceased by her parents Morris Joffe and Bernice Joffe, and her stepmother Beatrice Joffe, as well as her uncle Nelson Algren, and many beloved cousins. Ruth is survived by her brother Robert Joffe (Connie), children, Gary Joffe (Claudia), Bernice Sue Behar (Samuel), and Gail Lalk (Dennis), her grandchildren Neal, Daniel, Hannah, Jordan, Ellen, and Rebecca, and her nieces and nephews. She will be remembered with love as well by her devoted friends and caregivers.

A memorial service will be held on Tuesday October 10th at Fuller Lodge at 10 a.m., with lunch to follow. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in her memory to the Los Alamos Arts Council, the Los Alamos Historical Society, or the Muscular Dystrophy Association.

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