Ruby Elizabeth Briggs, passed away at 11:10 p.m. on Friday, January 17, 2014, in the Holzer Senior Care Center, near Gallipolis, Ohio. She had been in declining health for about the last eleven months following a fall at her home in Hanersville, near Gallipolis.
Ruby was born July 9, 1922 at Rinard Mills, Ohio, situated on the banks on the Little Muskingum River in Monroe County. She was the youngest of three daughters of Oscar Vernon Poulton and Ada Mary (Foraker) Poulton. Her elder sisters were Ruth and Marjorie, both now deceased.
She was an active and athletic girl, much the tomboy and enjoyed the rural life in her adolescent years, including play with her dog Rover and pickup games of baseball. She also excelled at school, and graduated valedictorian of the Graysville High School class of 1939. Although encouraged to attend college by others, she chose instead to remain in Rinard Mills, helping her parents with their duties as proprietors of the only country store in the hamlet.
During the turbulent years of World War II, she worked at the Sylvania defense plant in Marietta, Ohio, which produced electrical components for bomb fuses, and at the H & R Reassignment Center in Montgomery, Alabama, accompanying her parents who were in that area temporarily for her father’s health. After her father’s passing in 1943 and upon their return to Rinard Mills she continued to assist with the country store duties. During this time she also communicated by letter with Roy Delbert Briggs.
After the end of World War II, on April 8, 1946 she married Roy, also of Rinard Mills. He had spent the war years from 1941 to 1945 in the South Pacific Theatre operations. They soon relocated to Angola, Indiana, where Roy attended Tri-State College on the G.I. Bill and received a B.S. degree in mechanical engineering. While there, Ruby worked at a local photograph processing facility until she gave birth to her first son, Gregory, on March 5, 1946 . They then moved to Duncan Falls, Ohio, where Roy worked at the Ohio Power Company’s Philo Plant and Ruby devoted her full energies to motherhood, giving birth on December 16, 1950 to her second son, Terry.
In 1953 the family moved to New York City where Roy was a part of the operational planning stages for the Kyger Creek Power Plant being built at Cheshire, Ohio. The New York City experiences, including riding subways, attending a few Broadway shows, and visiting places like the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building were fond memories for a girl from rural Ohio. In 1954 they then moved to Gallipolis, where Roy was employed at the Kyger Creek plant. They remained there the rest of her life. On April 19, 1962 she gave birth to her third son, Roy Douglas (Doug). She continued to devote her full time to motherhood and home-making, and was an excellent baker.
She was active in all of her children’s activities as a member of the PTA, home room mother, scouting Den mother and band chaperone. She was also an active member of the First Presbyterian Church in Gallipolis, where she served as Deacon, was involved in the Ladies Circles, quilting bees, recipe books and also teaching some Sunday School. She was a giving and caring person, who was nearly always willing to put herself before for others to provide a helping hand.
She saw all her sons graduate from college and two of them marry; Greg to Donna High and Doug to Melinda Powers. She continued to support them and her husband in their endeavors. A born mother (and Grandmom, as she preferred it) if there ever were, she delighted in her two grandsons, Chad (Greg’s), Ethan (Doug’s) and her granddaughter Bryce (Doug’s).
Upon Roy’s retirement in 1980 she and he found they had even more time to enjoy each other’s company, and until her heart problems surfaced in 1988, they spent much time on short day hikes in Gallia County and southeastern Ohio and in 1987 enjoyed a major trip with their family to the canyons of the southwestern U.S., where she exercised her photographic skills. Additional heart problems in the 1990′s curtailed their activities some but until recent heart problems in late 2011 she still remained as active as she could be.
Ruby is survived by her husband and all her children, their spouses and grandchildren. Her positive approach to life will be missed.
Funeral services will be held on Wednesday January 22, 2014 at 11:00 a.m. in the Cremeens Funeral Home with Rev. Timothy Luoma officiating. Interment will be in Ohio Valley Memorial Gardens Cemetery. Visitation will be from 6-8 p.m. on Tuesday and one hour prior to the service time on Wendesday at the Chapel. In lieu of flowers, please make contributions to one of the following:
Alzheimer’s Foundation of America, www.alzfdn.org First Presbyterian Church, 81 State Street, Gallipolis, OH 45631 or the French Art Colony, www.frenchartcolony.org. Expressions of sympathy may be sent to the family by visiting www.cremeensfuneralhomes.com