Thursday, March 23, 2023

Ruth Leone Rinehart

| March 13, 2023 9:41 AM

Ruth Leone Rinehart, of Chelan, Washington, passed away on Feb. 13, a day before her 85th birthday, shortly after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. She was surrounded by her children and passed peacefully at home with her beloved husband and son at her bedside.

Ruth was a Valentine's Day baby, born in 1938 to Gladys and Charles Reese in Williamston, Michigan. After graduating from Williamston High School in 1956, Ruth enrolled in Mercy Central School of Nursing in Grand Rapids, Michigan. RN diploma in hand, she worked briefly in St. Paul, Minnesota, before returning to Williamston in 1960 to marry her high school sweetheart, Delbert Rinehart, for whom she had promised to wait until he was discharged from the Air Force.

They returned to St. Paul, where she resumed working as a nurse until the birth of their first child, David. She became a stay-at-home mom, having two more children, Daniel and Delece. Del’s job took them to Sundance, Wyoming, where their last child, Darrell, was born. After short stops in Great Falls and Glasgow, Montana, Ruth and her family settled down on a small farm 13 miles outside Opheim, Montana. It was so rural, Ruth would haul the kids to the bus stop in a trailer behind her snowmobile, ensuring they got on the bus safely during severe winters. Ruth shined as a mom in this isolated environment, passing along her love for the outdoors, animals, birds, gardening, and baking to her children.

When the kids were in their teens, Del’s job took them to Fort Peck, Montana, for a couple of years, and then to Moses Lake, Washington. (Partway into their move to Moses Lake, Mount St. Helens erupted and shut the roads down, stranding them for nearly a week.) Ruth resumed her nursing career, going to work for their family doctor in the Moses Lake Clinic. She retired in 1994.

After Del retired a year later, they hit the road in their pickup and fifth-wheel trailer, working on SOWER Ministry projects around the country. After being on the road for five years, Ruth tired of the nomadic lifestyle, so they returned to Washington and settled down on five acres outside Chelan, Washington, putting in a house and shop, where they have been living ever since. This is where Ruth passed away, in her house, on her terms, surrounded by family.

Ruth was a very talented seamstress and enjoyed quilting, a hobby through which she made many close friends. In retirement, Ruth developed a love for llamas and adopted several of her own. She enjoyed taking them on walks around the property and they joined her on her daily walk up to the mailbox.

Ruth had a profound belief in God that guided her life. She lived it every day as a Biblical and spiritual example to her family. After being diagnosed with cancer she didn’t become angry and ask why. Not Ruth! She was at peace, telling family, doctors and all those who visited her, “I’m in God’s hands” and “Jesus takes care of me.” She was very grateful to her friends and Living Stone Church congregation who gave her so much support and helped ease her way.

Ruth was preceded in death by her parents Gladys and Charles, her brothers Warren and Albert and her sister Alta Mae. She is survived by her husband Del; her sister Lois; her children David, Daniel, Delece and Darrell; five grandchildren and great-grandchildren, as well as nieces, nephews and cousins.

The family requests that any donations in lieu of flowers be made in memory of Ruth to Moody Radio at 520 N. LaSalle Blvd., Chicago, IL, 60610, by phone at 888-333-4015 or online at

A celebration of Ruth’s life will be held at Living Stone Church, 216 N Emerson, Chelan, Washington on April 22 at 2 p.m.


Ruth Leone Rinehart, of Chelan, Washington, passed away on Feb. 13, a day before her 85th birthday, shortly after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.

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