Ruth Hamilton, longtime Oak Parker, with 'capacity for happiness'

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Ruth Hulburt Hamilton died in Evanston on June 26, 2018.   Ruth was born in Kirksville, Missouri in 1921 but she spent most of her life as a devoted Oak Parker.  When she graduated from Oak Park and River Forest High she decided to study acting.   In her year at the Goodman School of Drama she was cast as a thorn bush in Sleeping Beauty.  The director criticized her in rehearsal, saying she was not brambling properly.  She then attended Pomona College and later graduated with a degree in English Literature from Rosary College in River Forest.

  In 1943 she married Allen Beye Hamilton.  During her long and happy marriage she wrote poems, several of which were published in the Ladies Home Journal.  Her poem, Song for A Fifth Child, has been cherished through the decades by generations of mothers.  In addition to raising five children Ruth had many vocations, acting in community theater productions, working at Oak Park High, and writing profiles of actors that appeared in the Chicago Daily News and many other newspapers.  Her pieces had her signature sparkle, wit, and generosity.  She wrote such a charming letter to Lynne Fontanne that the actress, who, with her husband Alfred Lunt, had long since stopped giving interviews, granted her an audience.  

Ruth spent the last 10 years of her life at the Presbyterian Home in Evanston.  Among Ruth's many gifts was her great capacity for happiness, a gift that touched everyone she met.  She will be remembered particularly for her profound joy by her friends, relations, her children Duncan, Bruce, Jeremy and Jane, her son-in-law Bob Willard, her grandchildren Allen and Duncan Riddell, and Ben and Hannah Willard.  Her daughter Sarah and her husband predeceased her.  In lieu of flowers please send contributions to the Employee Fund, The Geneva Foundation of Presbyterian Homes, or The Songs by Heart Foundation. 

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Deborah Preiser from River Forest  

Posted: June 28th, 2018 1:21 PM

Jane: I adored your mother. She was a frequent visitor to the Oak Park Public Library. I had not known she was a poet and journalist. She truly did have a "capacity for happiness." I am sorry for your loss, but I know you cherish many happy family memories.

Teresa Powell  

Posted: June 27th, 2018 9:48 PM

I did not know Ruth Hamilton but this is a delightful remembrance of her.

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