Ruth Ellen Cowan
October 31, 1951 - August 12, 2019
With heavy hearts, we announce that Ruth passed away peacefully surrounded by her family on August 12, 2019 in Health Sciences Center after a battle with cancer; she tried but could not win at the age of 67.
Ruth is survived by her husband and life-long supporter of 46 years Phil; her children Matt (Amanda) and Kelly (Glenn); her granddaughter Mackenzie; her sisters Martha (Richard) and Cathy (Bill) as well as many in-laws, nieces, nephews, cousins, and an abundance of friends near and far, old and new. She is pre-deceased by her parents Harry and Helen.
Ruth was born and raised in Winnipeg attending Rockwood, River Heights, St Mary's Academy and the U of M where she was a proud Alpha Gam and met her future husband who was a TKE. They were married November 3, 1973 and began a journey of 46 years which took them from Ontario to BC with Phil's work before returning to Winnipeg in 1992. They lived in 19 different houses and made wonderful friends in everyone. Along the way they had two children; Matt in 1979 and Kelly in 1986.
Ruth worked as an accountant/bookkeeper in many towns and cities, most recently in Winnipeg at Truserv Canada, always making great friends wherever she worked.
Ruth dedicated her life to her family and her community. She was not a person of tremendous means but was integral in raising millions for numerous organizations large and small. From various school parent-teacher associations, to Breast Cancer Manitoba and The Center of Hope; CIBC Run for the Cure, which she chaired early on and proudly watched flourish; Pink Ribbon Ladies golf tournament as a board member and decoration chair par excellence; volunteer and chair of the Teddy Bear’s Picnic; member of the Chown Guild; Children's Hospital Foundation; the Book Market and most recently, albeit too briefly, on the board of Jocelyn House Foundation.
When not involved in work and charity, she was an avid reader and passionate about family. She was immensely proud of her children, Matt and Kelly, and their partners as they matured into such special people who were greatly influenced by her shining example as they found their partners and began their own journeys thru life. She also had a very special place in her heart for her only granddaughter Mackenzie for whom she would do anything.
She was also very dedicated to her extended family and was chief organizer of all family gatherings from Major Mafia lunches to Christmas at Fort Whyte and nights at the ballet. Her favorite holidays were the Christmas season and of course Halloween. This latest attempt to change the date of Halloween would have really made her mad.
Through all of this, she maintained close ties with many lifelong friends from school to work; volunteering to her beloved gourmet group and travel companions. She travelled whenever possible from Europe to the Caribbean and extensively in Canada from coast to coast. Her journey was cut short but full of love and laughter, spreading joy wherever she was. She will be sorely missed by all who knew her.
Friends and relatives are encouraged to share in a photo-tribute, eulogy, stories and condolences for the family by commenting in the comments section of this page.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests a donation be made in her name to any of the aforementioned organizations which she supported.
A celebration of her life will be held 2:00 p.m. Saturday, September 28, 2019 at 603 Wellington Crescent at Academy Road (Unitarian Church).
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