Ruth Irwin, of Dowagiac

Published 3:39 pm Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Oct. 2, 1927 — Dec. 17, 2021

Ruth Hariet (Baldwin) Irwin, of Dowagiac, passed away Friday, Dec. 17, 2021, at the Timbers of Dowagiac.

She was born Oct. 2, 1927, in Three Oaks, Michigan to Fay and Phyllis (Jane) Baldwin, first of eight children.

Ruth graduated from Berrien Springs High School in 1945 and relocated to Dowagiac where she resided the rest of her life. She married George M. Irwin in Niles, Michigan on December 15, 1947. They spent 59 years together until Georges death in 2006. She worked at the Fair Store for many years, seasonally while raising her 6 children. She enjoyed reading and passed this on to her children through spending time at the Dowagiac library in their summer reading programs. She loved family gatherings, always making and bringing her homemade mac & cheese. She looked forward to summers spent camping with family at Brevort Lake in Upper Michigan. Ruth loved to travel, long trips or short trips, by car, bus, train, plane, or boat. She visited many sites throughout the US and took a number of cruises to Hawaii, Alaska, and the Caribbean. She enjoyed the summertime Thursday night concerts in the park and Bingo at the COA. Ruth never learned to drive so she became a robust walker. She was quick and quiet earning her the nickname “little Ninja” by a son-in-law.

She is survived by four of her six children, Jerry (Jo-Ann) of Foley, Alabama, Susan (Frank) Romane, of Punta Gorda, Florida, Sally (Mitch) Billingham, of Dowagiac, and Gary, of Dowagiac, daughter-in-law, Sharon Irwin, of Brownsburg, Indiana, sisters Marguerite Gotham, Florence (Larry) Parrish, Karen Pike, and Marylyn Stewart, 11 grandchildren, 18 great grandchildren, seven great-great-grandchildren.

Preceding her in death were her parents, husband, George; sons, Thomas and Donald; sister, Bonnie Parrish; brothers, James and William; and grandson, Kevin Billingham.

Funeral services will be at noon Wednesday, Dec. 22 with visitation at 11 a.m. at Clark Chapel funeral home with Pastor Gene Ellis officiating. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be directed to Cass County Council on Aging or Wounded Warriors Project.