Richard Ruby

Richard Peter (Dick / Ricardo) Ruby Sr., 78, of Seattle, WA, died Saturday, November 24, 2012.

Born on Wednesday, December 27, 1933, in Oak Park, Illinois, to Frank John Ruby of St. Louis, MO and Margaret Rena (Mohr) of Tuscon, AZ.

Raised in Illinois, Richard earned a B.A. from Principia College in 1955, where he also founded a Barbershop chorus. He continued to the University of Michigan, earning the hand of his wife Mitzi in 1956 and a LL.B. (JD) in 1958. After graduation, they moved to Seattle where Richard worked as Assistant Corporate Counsel for the City of Seattle.

In 1963, he began his career as an International Lawyer when he joined the US Agency for International Development. He and Mitzi spent 14 of their next 19 years abroad. Among other places, they served in Lima, Peru where their first son, Richard Jr. was born, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, where their second son Marco was born, and in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, where their daughter Jennifer was born.

During his time in Lima, Peru, Richard served as Chairman of the American School, Colegio Roosevelt. He played first chair trombone for the Miraflores Jazz Club, and founded and directed the Men’s Barbershop Chorus. It was a struggle between how much time could he give to music, his first love, and still be successful in his professional life.

In 1985, he moved back to Edmonds, WA where he purchased The House of Marble. Richard married his second wife Judith Constans, also an attorney, in 1987, gaining loving step-children. Richard and Judy shared many passions, including boating, riding horses in the Methow Valley, hiking in the mountains, and salmon fishing. When they weren’t working, they could be found out on the water puttering around the islands in one of the 28 boats he owned throughout his life.

Subsequent years found Richard involved in Adopt a Stream Foundation projects, volunteering at Seattle Audubon, counting numerous birds, and keeping up to date on the mining/environmental stewardship controversy of the Pebble Mine project in Alaska. He even attended haute couture fashion shows as his step-daugther modeled in Seattle and around the world.

He has struggled with cancer since 1992. He overcame it each time but at a cost. He lost his ability to sing or play music. And later his ability to drink or swallow. Years of aspirating caused his lungs to deteriorate (Bronchiectasis), hampering any recovery. Surrounded by the 7 most important things in his life: his 3 children, 2 stepchildren (Michael & Katie Constans), and 2 sons-in-law (Karl Griep & Matt Simerson), we said our last goodbyes, and he peacefully breathed his last.

Richard was preceded in death by one brother, Jon Franklin Ruby of Arizona; his father Frank J. Ruby; his mother Margaret R. Mohr; two grandparents, August C Mohr, and Rena (Rees) of Deerfield, IL; his wife of 12 years, Judy (Wickens) Constans; and his first wife of 30 years, Mitzi (LaBree) Moore.

Richard is survived by three children, Richard P. Ruby Jr. of Tukwila, WA, Marco A. Ruby and his wife Phon K. of Franklin, TN, and Jennifer (Ruby) Simerson and her husband Matthew P. of Seattle, WA; four grandchildren, Kayla and Lucas Simerson of Seattle, WA, and Skylar and Ashton Ruby of Franklin, TN.

His family personally thanks all his Doctors / Specialists, Northwest Hospital, Providence Hospice, Compassion & Choices, and People’s Memorial for their compassionate care and years of support.

Richard is missed, and his family wishes him the grace and love that he extended to us.

A memorial service will be held on Friday, Dec. 7 at 6 PM, in the Edmonds Public Library in the Plaza Room.

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  1. Megenity
    Posted December 5, 2012 at 7:25 pm | Permalink

    Ricardo was a kind and generous and loving friend. We will truly miss him.
    Carol and Rick

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