Obituary for Eunice (“Ruddy”) Hale Smith
September 5, 1922—February 4, 2018
Eunice “Ruddy” H. Smith was born on September 5, 1922, the third of four children of William B. and Eunice F. Hale and was raised in their house in Winnetka, Illinois. She died on February 4, 2018 in her home in Lake Forest, IL at the age of 95. After graduating from Milton Academy, she attended Bryn Mawr College and graduated from the University of Chicago. In her early sixties, she completed her Masters in Business degree at Lake Forest College.
During WWII, Ruddy was a reporter for the Chicago Tribune, where she covered everything from police and crime activity to civic gatherings. She spent time with her parents in Winnetka, loving to join her father when he painted in his attic studio, and keeping her mother company following his death. After the war, she met Gordon H. Smith through mutual friends and they were married in Winnetka, Illinois in June, 1947. They remained happily married until he passed away on December 1, 2009, at age 94.
They have four children, L. Peter Smith, Susan D. Smith, Catherine H. Smith and Maud S. Daudon and eight grandchildren. Throughout the years of raising children, Ruddy was an active and community-engaged volunteer. Starting in the 1960’s, Ruddy devoted much of her efforts to Planned Parenthood, helping to introduce birth control to Cook County hospital. She served on many other boards including Hull House and Lake Forest College. For many years and until recently, she served as a docent at the Art Institute of Chicago and was an active member in Know Your Chicago, a program of the University of Chicago designed to promote civic awareness and participation. She was active with several of these activities into her 90’s.
Her children remember her as independent and courageous, with an unflagging sense of humor. She was an avid golfer and tennis player at the many clubs to which she and Gordon belonged. She loved walking the open lands behind her home. She graciously entertained friends and family in her home, while also being a wonderful wife, and loving mother not only to her children but to the many golden retrievers who were her constant companions. She stayed keenly aware of world events, and remained actively engaged in politics throughout her life. Her children will greatly miss her ability to laugh and get silly and her joy at seeing old friends, little children, her family and any dog of any shape or size.
Her family wants to thank Felix and Marjorie Llanes who were Ruddy’s care providers for the last five years of her life.
Services will be held at 3:00 p.m., June 2, 2018 at the Church of the Holy Spirit, 400 East Westminster Road, Lake Forest, IL. A reception will follow immediately after at the church.
Contributions may be made to Planned Parenthood of Illinois or Know your Chicago.
For information: Wenban Funeral Home, Lake Forest (847) 234-0022.