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Ruth Lee

Ruth Lee

Ruth Lee, 83, passed from this life on Mother's Day, May 14, 2017, at home under hospice care and with her children, Eric and Margrit, at her bedside. A memorial service will be held at 11 am Monday, May 22, at St. John Lutheran Church in Fargo with burial in Osterdalen Cemetery near Harwood, N.D. in the early afternoon. Arrangements by Boulger Funeral Home in Fargo.

Ruth Ingeburg Manigk was born to Hans and Elisabeth (Wegner) Manigk in the small town of Torgau, Germany on the Elbe River on January 3, 1934. Blessed to experience childhood in a rural setting, she grew up with a succinct love of nature and all of its wonders. Unfortunately, by age 10 the horrors of the Second World War came to Torgau, and Ruth endured many privations and terrors both during the war and under Soviet occupation until her escape to the West in 1952. In West Berlin, Ruth attended and subsequently graduated from Business College in 1955, still dreaming of something better.

In 1956, through the auspices of the Lutheran World Federation under the sponsorship of the Bethany Rest Home, she immigrated to America and came to Fargo to stay with her sponsor family, that of the Rev. Elmer O. Lee. It was here she met her future husband Elvin, Elmer's son, and the two were united in marriage later that year on Dec 16, 1956. The couple then moved to Chicago to begin their new life and family. In years following they made their home in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, fully enjoying the beauty of the Tennessee Valley and the Appalachian Mountains. The couple returned to Fargo in 1975, where Ruth held personnel and regional management jobs for Herberger's and Hickory Farms in the 70's and 80's. In 1992 the couple retired and moved back to eastern Tennessee, always their favorite place to be.

As life goes sometimes, however, the couple moved back to Fargo for the final time in 2003, where they continued to enjoy their retirement and the joys of helping to take care of their latest grandchildren.

Ruth enjoyed painting, crafting, gardening, political discussions, and being the loving and guiding light for all of her children and grandchildren. She was also an outstanding cook of European cuisine, lavishing her family with incredible meals not only on holidays, but any time you would care to visit her. She pampered her various dogs and was a lover of all animals. She was a strong yet gentle soul, her early life teaching her to be tough without ever forgetting to be kind. She was unfailingly honest, polite, practical and ever cheerful despite the many hardships in her life.

Ruth is survived by her husband, Elvin, 89 ; her brother Horst (Ingrid) Manigk of Charlottenburg, Germany; her children Gloria (Jesus) Martinez of Park Forest IL, Eric, of Sacramento CA, and Margrit Schwartz, of Fargo; 7 grandchildren: Geoffrey Martinez, Alexis (Chris Graham) Martinez, Dennis (Katie) Martinez, Donald (Michelle) Martinez, Joshua Martinez, Hunter and Bella Schwartz; 6 great-grandchildren: Isaac, Aaron, Michael, Jocelyn, Mila and Brady.

She was preceded in death by her parents and her brothers Hans and Uwe of Germany.

Memorial Donations may be made to The American Lung Association.

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