Ruth Ellen McElwee Andrews was born in Hornell, NY on April 29, 1928 to Ernest and Mabel Stannard McElwee where she grew up with her sister, Elizabeth Marsden and brother, Robert S. McElwee. On March 12, 2020, this beautiful woman of God left this earth, just a month shy of her 92nd birthday.
Ruth was married to Reverend Paul F. Andrews in Royersford, Pennsylvania in 1949 and celebrated 57 years of marriage, prior to his death in 2006. They were blessed to have a large and boisterous family, including five daughters, Carol Newell (Herb), Ruth Parker (Randy), Patti Silverman (Ken), Lois Ingland (Robb) and Bonnie Shekarabi (Ahmad). She was also the proud Gigi to 15 grandchildren and 29 great-grandchildren. In addition to Ruth’s parents, siblings and husband, she is preceded in death by two of her precious grandchildren, Jeffrey Henning and Martin Newell. Grandchildren also include Jodi Newell, Dana, Jeremy and Jason Parker, Rianne Gould, Meagan Morrow, Jessica Joyner, Kelly Brock, Chelsea Smiley, Mac Ingland, Joe and Eric Shekarabi and Andrea Bennett.
Ruth was a pastor’s wife in the Church of the Nazarene for most of her career, supporting her husband Paul with every aspect of his ministry while also raising 5 children. She was a beautiful violinist, which was one of the many features that drew Paul to her. She led the Women’s Missionary Society, the choir and taught children’s church. Some of our most treasured memories are the lessons she taught on “flannel boards” and the poignant children’s stories such as Barney’s Barrel. She was an excellent cook, often entertaining missionaries and special guests in her home, and was known for her delectable cookies and pies. She was an avid gardener and could turn anything, including a pile of rocks, into a plush garden of phlox. Ruth always had a camera in hand and had volumes of photo albums documenting a life well-lived.
Upon retirement, Paul and Ruth returned to her childhood home-place in Hornell and started a small church in their home. Ruth loved to paint and create crafts, so “retirement” allowed her the opportunity to pursue her creative talents and found her own business, Ruth’s Creations. They later left snowy NY and moved to Georgia where they enjoyed sunshine, travel and numerous family adventures. After widowhood, Ruth moved back to Pennsylvania, just a few miles from Royersford, Pennsylvania where her marriage to Paul began years ago. In addition to photography, she enjoyed reading, gardening, her cat, family, puzzles and spending time with her Potter’s Girls bible study group.
Ruth had a quick wit, a sparkle in her eye and a contagious smile. Her family mourns her loss but rejoices in the fact that she is free of pain and that we will see her again one day. We are deeply grateful to all her friends, family and Willow Tree Hospice who cared for her so tenderly in her final days.
A celebration of her life will be held at the James J. Terry Funeral Home, 1060 W. Lincoln Hwy, Coatesville, Pennsylvania at 3:00pm on Saturday, March 14, 2020. The family will receive visitors at 2:00pm. In honor of Ruth’s love for flowers, beauty and nature, a memorial garden will be created near the woods and waterfall where she lived with her daughter, Ruth Parker. Plants or flowers that can live on in that garden are appreciated. Donations can also be made to: Women of Faith Alliance, PO Box 736, Downingtown, PA 19335 or womenoffaithalliance.com.
Click here to view a webcast of the service on 3/14/2020 at 02:55 PM, Eastern Standard Time.
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