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Name: Ruth Ann Lehman Trumbull
Spouse: Howard Trumbull
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Class of

1957 Attended from through

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Birthdate: December 18, 1939   
Date of Death: February 3, 2015  

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Ruth Ann Trumbull was a hard working woman with a robust personality. She not only spoke her opinion, she made things happen with her strong will, realistic expectations and "sassy" style. Her family was the recipient of her assertiveness, and she put their interests before her own. Ruth Ann was self-less and generous in her determination to make life good for those around her.

Born December 18, 1939 in Kimmel, Indiana, Ruth Ann was the daughter of Chris Henry and Dorothy Bernice (Ringler) Lehman. Growing up in a large family in Columbia City, she lived a simple childhood in the years following the Great Depression. It was a period in which Americans lived without extravagances and managed to make ends meet through much sacrifice. In her teen years, Ruth Ann worked at a root beer stand and ended up leaving high school before graduating in order to care for her mother.

Work and family were important to Ruth Ann, and at times, they went hand-in-hand. As an adult, she partnered with her husband, Howard Wesley Trumbull, whom she married on June 8, 1957 at Columbia City Baptist Church. The two had met downtown while hanging out with a large group of mutual friends. Though Howard was bashful, Ruth Ann knew she liked him and set their courtship in motion. They joined their lives and livelihood together in the business they owned and operated from 1966 to 1979: Trumbull's Service Station located on State Road 9, south of Columbia City.

It was a huge undertaking as they put their heart and soul into its success. The station was open weekdays, weekends and partial-days on holidays, and oftentimes, Ruth Ann worked seven days a week. It became a full scale family business when all the children helped operate the station. That was the Trumbull's life for the 13 years that Howard and Ruth Ann owned the gas service station. When they sold it, she went to work for Alcoils producing electric motors.

Ruth Ann was no stranger to work, but she also enjoyed her leisure. She liked sculpting and painting, playing Euchre with friends and meeting her sisters for coffee every Monday. She made baking into an art form with her desserts and crème pies (lemon meringue, coconut crème, banana crème). She liked traveling to Florida to see her sister, to New York to visit her brother and to Michigan to stroll one of her favorite spots, Mackinac Island. Even as she aged and had to take more frequent breaks as she toured the countryside, Ruth Ann was eager to discover sights of beauty and peace, most recently in Holland, Michigan.

A former resident of Whitley County, Ruth Ann lived in Allen County for the past twenty years. She was brought to Parkview Regional Medical Center in Fort Wayne after a sudden illness and passed away at 9:17 p.m. Tuesday, February 3, 2015.

Ruth Ann Trumbull, 75, of Fort Wayne and formerly of Columbia City, Indiana is survived by her daughters, Janet S. Ihnen and Deborah A. (Stan) Thompson, both of Fort Wayne; sons, Ronald L. (Elaine) Trumbull of Warsaw and Rick A. Trumbull of Southgate, KY; brother, Harold Lehman and Kenneth Lehman both of Columbia City; sisters, Mary (Esta) Martz of Ocala, FL, Dorothy Smith of Columbia City and Linda (Gary) Craig of Fort Wayne; 9 grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents; husband Howard Trumbull; son, Glen Trumbull; brothers, Charles, Ralph, Jack and Larry Lehman; and sisters, Betty Anderson and Marjorie Judd.

Visitation will be held on Saturday, February 7, 2015 from 12 to 2 p.m. with a funeral service to follow at 2 p.m. at DeMoney-Grimes, a Life Story Funeral Home, 600 Countryside Drive, Columbia City. Certified Funeral Celebrant, Sharon Brockhaus, officiating. Burial will follow at Oak Grove (Compton) Cemetery.

Memorial donations can be made in Mrs. Trumbull's memory to Visiting Nurse and Hospice Home or Riley Children's Foundation. Please visit to send family condolences or sign the guest register book.

Last Updated: 02-07-2015 Alumni ID: 24720
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© 2005 Columbia City High School Alumni Association     This page last modified 09/27/2006