Calaveritas, CA…Marion Leroy Ruthrauff passed peacefully July 3, 2020, surrounded by his loving family in the home he built. Marion was born to Eunita Summer Rives and Otto Martin Ruthrauff in South Haven, Kansas. Marion was the oldest of three farm boys, all of whom fought in World War II. Marion served as a military police officer in the 12th armored division in the US Army from March 1944-July 1946.
Marion married his high school sweetheart Imogene Ashby and traveled to California where he and Imogene adopted Larry and Cindy Ruthrauff and fostered many other children.
Before the war, Marion began working in the shipyards in Oakland building ships for the Kaiser Foundation. After the war, Marion became a general building contractor and held his license over 50 years. He always claimed that he bought the first 2×4 Will Fullaway sold at Calaveras Lumber.
While remodeling a home, he met Patricia Ann Hopkins after he and Imogene had divorced. Patricia had two children from a previous marriage, Ron and Pamela Waldron. Marion and Patricia were married in December of 1966 and soon gave birth to their son Eric Ruthrauff. While Marion and Patricia were both divorced, they remained good friends with their previous spouses and co-parented all of their children, and even took vacations and boated together.
Marion and Patricia met in Walnut Creek, California and in 1972 they made the huge move to Calaveras County, to get out of the “rat race!” If they could only see it now! Marion kept quite busy building and remodeling various buildings in the foothills, including Mark Twain Hospital and the VFW.
Marion was an active member of the San Andreas Lions Club for over 20 years. He was not only a lifetime member, but also served as President and Anna Moffit was his amazing friend and secretary. He was quite a salesperson for raffle tickets and could be found at Treat’s handing out flags for white cane day. Marion was also a member of the VFW post #2600, where he enjoyed spending time with other veterans and eating amazing meals made by the one and only Don Cuneo.
Marion and Patricia settled into Calaveritas after moving to Calaveras County. They both spent a tremendous amount of time sitting on Louise Greenlaw’s porch with a glass of tea or maybe a glass of wine. Marion and Patricia began work on the “Stony Oak” property in 1974. Not only did Marion design and build his home, but he also started every plant by grafting. He must have been pretty good at it as the property is covered in oleanders! Many of those starts came from Louise. Marion also spent time with Fred Cuneo volunteering with the Calaveras County Republican party. One could find him at the fair booth talking up a storm with fellow Republicans.
In 2009 Marion was blessed to take an “honor’ flight in Washington, DC where he was treated like a true hero.
Marion never knew a stranger and loved to stop and talk to ALL. He loved a great meal at Crusco’s and spent his last two birthday’s there with family. He loved to dress up and even at 97 danced at Renegade Winery last summer. Marion’s zest for life will be missed by all that knew him. Sadly he didn’t make it to 110 as he liked to brag he would.
Marion is survived by his loving son Eric (Kim), Grandchildren- Brandon Ruthrauff, Byron (Stacy) Ruthrauff, Micah (Melissa) Ruthrauff, Adina (Mike) Vega, Stacia (Jerrett) Portis, Chelsea (Kael) Smith, Makayla and Taylor Ruthrauff. Great Grandchildren-Jace and Jeremy Ruthrauff, Kiefer Ruthrauff, Piper and Katelyn Ruthrauff, Evan, Harris and Maximus Vega, Tristen, Isabella and Landon Portis. Great Great Grandchildren- Arabelle Ruthrauff, Theodore Beerbower, Jaya, Brylie and Remmi Ruthrauff. Marion is also survived by life time friends Helen Norton-Noble, Vonna and Bill Moore, Patricia Waldron and many cousins, nieces, nephews and some pretty amazing neighbors.
Marion was preceded in death by both his parents, brothers Otto and Donald Ruthrauff, Imogene Ashby, Patricia Ann Ruthrauff, Larry Ruthrauff, Cindy Ruthrauff Wierzbicky, Pamela Waldron, and Ron Waldron.
In lieu of flowers donations may be made to Amador/Calaveras Hospice, The Mokelumne Hill Lions Club or the San Andreas VFW post #2600
A celebration of life will be held at a later date, once it is safe to do so.