Ruth Collins

1924 - 2013


Ruth Collins

May 24, 1924 — Nov. 15, 2013

Lifelong Walla Walla resident Ruth Helen Collins, 89, died peacefully early in the morning of Nov. 15, 2013, at Washington Odd Fellows Home, Walla Walla.

Ruth was born the seventh of 10 children to Conrad and Magdalena Butherus. Ruth attended Paine School and graduated from Walla Walla High School in 1942. She held many secretarial positions throughout Walla Walla, working several years at Walla Walla Livestock Company and Whitman College. She married George W. Collins in 1950 and celebrated 50 years of marriage before George passed away in 2001. They had a son, Tim of McCall, Idaho; a daughter, Patrice Townsend (Jeffrey) of Walla Walla; and stepson, Lyle Collins (Karen) of Yakima.

Ruth volunteered for numerous organizations with many years devoted to Meals on Wheels and Red Cross blood drives. She was a 60-plus-year member of Beta Sigma Phi and enjoyed long friendships with many of its members. She was a founding member of the Walla Walla chapter of Germans from Russia Historical Society and was a member of Pioneer United Methodist Church. She enjoyed weekly coffee dates with girlfriends from her old German neighborhood and many road trips with George.

Besides her children, she is survived by her siblings, Maxine Jeannette Kennar (George) of Hillsboro, Ore., and Molly Joyce Sterry (Phillip) of Kailua, Hawaii; her grandchildren, Karinna Ball, Kim Niles, Karrilee Aggett and Wiley and Sadie Townsend; along with four great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents; and siblings, Jacob Butherus, Alexander Butherus, Marie Smith, Lydia Sisk, Victor Butherus, Arthur Butherus and Richard Butherus.

There will be a private graveside service followed by a memorial service on Friday, Nov. 22, 2013, at noon at College Place Presbyterian Church, 325 N.E. Damsen, College Place. Memorial contributions may be made to Walla Walla Community Hospice through the Herring-Groseclose Funeral Home, 315 W. Alder, Walla Walla, WA 99362. Family and friends are invited to sign the online guestbook at


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