Well-known Meeker resident Ruby J. Hart, after living on this earth for 98 years, passed from this life and moved on to a better place May 22, 2015, at Walbridge Wing in Meeker, Colo.
Grandma came into this world on March 26, 1917, near Debeque, Colo., the second child to Lute and Ella Armstrong. As a child, she spent much time with her father cowboying on EO Mountain, and she often talked about staying at the EO Cow Camp.
When she was approximately 12 years of age, her parents decided to move to Lime Kiln Hill near Meeker. She and her brother, Phil, who was just a few years older, brought the family cattle over—just the two of them. They drove cows up from Roan Creek, up over the rim and down to Piceance Creek, up Piceance Creek and finally to their new place in Lime Kiln. It took them five or six days to accomplish this feat, but they made it with all of their cattle, and it was something grandma was very proud of.
Grandma never finished high school but went to work cooking at an early age. She worked hard all of her life, well into an age that most people would have long since been retired. She cooked at the hospital, where she sent out the first-ever Meals on Wheels for Meeker.
She cooked for school lunch for many many years. Her Friday cinnamon rolls are still talked about today. She later had a catering business doing local dinners and parties. She did the annual Fireman’s Dinner for so many years they awarded her the title of Honorary Fireman and she received two tickets to their banquet for many years.
She married Everett Proctor, and together they raised Dixie, Jewell and Ester as well as boys Deloss, Clinton (Shorty), Carl (Spud) and Kenneth (Butch).
She later married Freeman (Tuffy) Hart, whom she loved dearly. They weren’t together for nearly enough years as Tuffy died at the age of 52. Their time spent together gardening and taking such good care of their yard as well as hunting for arrowheads were some of Grandma’s fondest memories.
Grandma lived through some very hard times and never had a lot herself. But she was always taking care of somebody less fortunate than her. She never complained much, but living through a great Depression and later watching all her boys go off to war were very hard on her, and she said she worried a lot during those days. The boys all came home safely.
Grandma cooked and canned all of her life; she canned almost anything that can be canned. Until well into her later years she always had a big garden and the most beautiful yard in town. That was something she was very proud of. Her yard stood host to a number of weddings, family reunions and parties.
At the age of 91, Grandma had both knees replaced at the same time, then came home to Meeker five days later and was able to take care of herself for at least another five years. She was the toughest person I have ever known. Her knee surgeon made her his poster child.
Grandma travelled some and even got to see all of the Hawaiian Islands, but, to her, Meeker was the greatest place to be. She was honored in 2010 by being elected to be Co-Grand Marshal in the Range Call Parade on the Fourth of July.
Grandma was preceded in death by: her parents; her brother, Phil; two sons, Clinton and Carl; and at least four grandchildren.
She is survived by and will be missed by: daughters Dixie, Jewell and Esther; sons Deloss and Kenneth; as well as many grandchildren, great-grandchildren, great-great-grandchildren and her many friends, who affectionately knew her as Grandma Ruby. She is my hero!
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Meals on Wheels program or to Walbridge Wing in Grandma’s name.
Services are pending and will be announced at a later date.