COLUMBIA - Ruth Ann Ashby Russell, 79, formerly of Charleston, died at 7 a.m. May 14, 2002, in Pleasant Hill.
Born Sept. 28, 1922, in Charleston, she was the daughter of the late Frank Kelly and Effie Mai Anderson Ashby. A 1944 graduate of Southeast Missouri State University in Cape Girardeau, known then as "Cape State," she spent 14 years as a naval wife. A faithful and supportive companion to her husband, she spent 14 years as the chancellor's wife of the University of Missouri at Kansas City and then five years as the president's wife of the University of Missouri at Columbia as he served in the University of Missouri system. A lifelong Methodist, she was a member of the Missouri United Methodist Church at Columbia and an active member of the King's Daughters. An avid bridge player, she loved duplicate bridge and had achieved the level of Life Master through competitive play.
On Nov. 11, 1944, she married George Albert Russell who survives of the home.
Also surviving are: three sons and daughters-in-law, George Albert and Patricia Russell III of Macomb, Ill., Frank Ashby and Linda Russell of Des Moines, Iowa, and Cramer Anderson and DeAun Russell of Lee's Summit; one daughter and son-in-law, Ruth Ann and Darrell Vaughn of Pleasant Hill; and 15 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
One brother, Roderic Ashby, preceded her in death.
Visitation is from 11 a.m. Friday until service time at 1 p.m. at McMikle Funeral Home in Charleston. The Rev. Richard Combs, a United Methodist minister of Jackson, will officiate.
Burial will follow in the IOOF Cemetery near Charleston.
Pallbearers will be: Jeff Vaughn, Alex Russell, Thomas Russell, Kelly Russell, Bert Russell and Corey Paul.
A memorial service and reception for her friends will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday at the Missouri United Methodist Church in Columbia with the Rev. Jim Bryan, pastor, officiating.
Memorial contributions may be sent to:
the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation
Kansas City Chapter
6701 W. 64th St.
Shawnee Mission, Kan. 66202