//cdn.lifestorynet.com/obituaries/016/108327/108327-life-panel.jpg

Ruth King

February 21, 1923 - July 26, 2015
Grand Rapids, MI

//cdn.lifestorynet.com/obituaries/016/108327/108327-01.jpg

Visitations


Friday, July 31, 2015
6:00 PM to 7:00 PM EDT
First Christian Reformed Church
650 Bates SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49506
Map

Services


Friday, July 31, 2015
7:00 PM EDT
First Christian Reformed Church
650 Bates SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49506
Map

Contributions


At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.

Eastown Ministries
610 Benjamin Street SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49506
Web Site

Flowers


Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.

Ball Park Floral
8 Valley Ave.
Grand Rapids, MI 49504
(616) 459-3409
Driving Directions
Web Site

Life Story / Obituary


//cdn.lifestorynet.com/fh/view-life-story-video.jpg//cdn.lifestorynet.com/obituaries/016/108327/108327-02.jpg//cdn.lifestorynet.com/obituaries/016/108327/108327-03.jpg//cdn.lifestorynet.com/obituaries/016/108327/108327-04.jpg//cdn.lifestorynet.com/obituaries/016/108327/108327-05.jpg//cdn.lifestorynet.com/fh/download-memory-folder.jpg
Print

A woman who was truly beautiful on the inside and out, Ruth King was a gift in the lives of those around her. She was patient, forgiving, and content to remain in the background with a generous spirit that was unmatched. Ruth was a devoted wife and loving mother who lived to nurture and care for her loved ones throughout her entire life. Gracious, sweet, and kindhearted, she was continually thinking of others ahead of herself. Although she will be deeply missed, Ruth leaves behind a priceless collection of memories that her loved ones will forever cherish.

It was great to be an American during the 1920s. Innovation brought us things like radios, washing machines, and motion pictures in both color and sound while Amelia Earhart and Charles Lindbergh took the world of flight to new heights. Amidst this exciting time was the year 1923 that was filled with great joy for Cornelius and Cornelia "Case and Kate" (VanStrien) VanderJagt as they announced the birth of their healthy baby girl on February 21, 1923, in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Ruth Ellen was one of nine children and was the youngest daughter to be raised in the family home on the Northeast side of the city.

In many ways, Ruth was a young girl of her generation. She spent much of her time in the home, helping tend the the household responsibilities and her younger brothers, which were both great learning experiences that would serve her well when it came to running her own home one day. As a student, Ruth attended Stocking Elementary, and as a family they attended Wealthy Street Baptist Church. It was during her formative years that she came to embrace the faith that was a cornerstone throughout her entire life. Ruth’s father was an evangelist, and as a result she was forever looking for opportunities to share her faith with others. Her high school years found her at Union High School where she was a good student and always well behaved.

Life was forever changed for Ruth when she met and later married Ken Blickley. Together they were blessed with three boys, Bill, Steven, and Allen. Ruth tended to the needs of her home and family, and when needed she did do some other jobs as well such as waitressing or cooking at local restaurants. Ruth also worked as a special dietician for Metropolitan Hospital for a time. Although their marriage later ended in divorce, Ruth was forever grateful for the children they shared.

A few years later, Ruth met Leon Velzy and they eventually married. A bit later, their family was completed with the birth of their daughter, Debra. For several years they lived in a home on Plainfield Avenue, NE that also had small houses nearby that they rented out as motels. Ruth again took care of all the cleaning and laundry as well as handling all the day to day household needs including canning. They eventually moved to Big Brower Lake in Rockford, and Ruth loved her home on the lake.

Although caring for her family was first and foremost, she kept busy in a variety of other ways as well. She was a talented seamstress who enjoyed both sewing and mending clothes. Ruth loved to bake and made the most wonderful pies and cream puffs. Sunday afternoons often found her playing board games with her kids, and they also traveled as a family a bit. Ruth enjoyed spending time with her friends, many of which were friends from her neighborhood or people she met from her kids’ school. Her siblings were also a big part of Ruth’s social life. Later in life, Ruth and Leon moved to Coldbrook, NE where she faithfully cared for him as his health declined while he was showing the effects of Alzheimer’s disease.

Some time later, Ruth found love again with Donald King whom she met through her brother. They married, and they were great companions and partners. Don treated Ruth very well and cared for her, and he also became involved with the rest of the family. They moved to his home on Emerald Lake, and they also traveled in their motorhome together. Ruth and Donald loved eating out, which they did often, and they also frequently spent time with grandchildren whether they were taking them out to eat or on another adventure or just watching them at times. With a vibrant personal faith of her own, Ruth was always looking for ways to pass on her legacy of faith to her grandchildren. She was there to offer her grandchildren guidance as needed, but she also talked to them about how to live life in light of eternity as well.

All who knew Ruth King would agree that she was an extraordinary woman to know and love. She could see the bright side of anything, even when difficulties were weighing heavily on her heart. Ruth regularly took time to complement and build others up, and she was selfless and forgiving as well. Even when her own health was limiting her, she did her best to tenderly care for Don during his time of need. After his death, Ruth moved to Clark Home where she spent the remainder of her days. She learned to paint and often made bookmarks that she enjoyed giving to others.

Gracious, caring, and genuine, there was no one who met Ruth King and left unchanged. It was easy to see that her life was rooted in something different, something deeper, and that something was her unwavering faith. Selfless in every way, Ruth lived to care for her loved ones in ways both great and small. She will be deeply missed, but her timeless legacy will be carried on by those who follow in her footsteps.

Ruth Ellen King, age 92 of Grand Rapids, went home to be with her Lord and Savior on July 26, 2015. She was preceded in death by her husbands, Leon Velzy and then Donald King, as well as by her 8 brothers and sisters. Ruth is survived by her children, Bill (LaVerne) Blickley, Steven (Sharon) Blickley, Allen M. (Kathy) Blickley, Debra Pate; many grandchildren and great grandchildren. Ruth was a member of First Christian Reformed Church, 650 Bates Street SE where her funeral service will be held on Friday, July 31, 2015 at 7 PM. Friends may visit with her family at the church from 6 PM until the service. For those who wish, memorial contributions to Eastown Ministries, 610 Benjamin St. SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49506 are appreciated. To read more about Ruth's life, to share a memory or to sign her guestbook, visit www.lifestorynet.com

//cdn.lifestorynet.com/fh/view-life-story-video.jpg//cdn.lifestorynet.com/obituaries/016/108327/108327-02.jpg//cdn.lifestorynet.com/obituaries/016/108327/108327-03.jpg//cdn.lifestorynet.com/obituaries/016/108327/108327-04.jpg//cdn.lifestorynet.com/obituaries/016/108327/108327-05.jpg//cdn.lifestorynet.com/fh/download-memory-folder.jpg