Roger D. Ruhs, 61, 113 S. 9th St., Clear Lake, died Saturday, Dec. 28, 2013 at Mercy Medical Center of North Iowa, Mason City.
A funeral service was held at 11 a.m., Friday, Jan. 3, 2014 at Ward-Van Slyke Colonial Chapel, Clear Lake. Memorials may be given to the Roger D. Ruhs Memorial Fund.
Roger was born Oct. 29, 1952 in Keokuk, Iowa, the son of Lloyd and Talleta “Tillie” (Appledorn) Ruhs. He grew up playing little league fast pitch softball and pony league fast pitch in Basco, Ill. Roger did not play baseball until high school in Warsaw, Ill., where he graduated in 1971. After playing baseball and basketball at Keokuk Community College, Roger moved to the Des Moines area and was immediately picked up with the Bondurant town softball team. He then played with the Des Moines Jets and moved on to play with Jerry Sands and Moe Eubanks on the C&P Vending team.
In 1975, Roger got a call from Bill Peters asking him to join the Bombers and to learn to play first base. Roger made a smooth transition to first base, and held it down until he and Tom Stokesbary traded positions and he remained a top fielding shortstop for the rest of his career.
Roger moved to Clear Lake in 1980 to work for the Clear Lake Bakery and play for the Clear Lake Butt’r Top softball team. Roger played on two state championship teams in his three years with Clear Lake Butt’r Top team. Butt’r Top and Modern Piping merged to form the Iowans, and Roger played for the team one season. Roger finished his career playing for the Mankato Happy Chef team. After the 1985 season, Roger decided it was time to call it quits while he was still on top of his game. In all, his career included six state or regional championship teams. Roger batted over .300 every year of his career and a high of .367 in 1983. As a left handed hitter, Roger used his speed to get on base, yet he still managed to have a season with 11 home runs.
Roger married Sheryl “Sherri” Weber on Sept. 28, 2002 in Clear Lake.
Besides softball and bowling in his younger years, Roger enjoyed playing golf with the Sunday Funday Group where you were never quite sure of what was going to happen. He was an avid Iowa Hawkeyes and St. Louis Cardinals fan. He and Sherri hosted many Hawkeye parties and their annual Frog Leg Fry. Roger was also very fond of his dogs. Whether playing softball in the yard or reading stories, Roger loved to spend time with his grandchildren.
Roger is survived by his wife, Sherri Ruhs, Clear Lake; mother-in-law, Kira Weber, Osage, Iowa; step-children, Jacqlyn (Bill) Ferjak, Eden Prairie, Minn., Jennifer (Tom) Faber, Clear Lake, and Jessica (Pete) Cash, Ventura; grandchildren, Kennidy and Andrew Faber and Lorelei and James Cash; brothers, Larry (Vicki) Ruhs, Quincy, Ill., and Ronnie Ruhs, Rockport, Texas; brother and sister’s-in-law, Donna and David Hanna, Owatonna, Minn., Kenneth and Patty Weber, Manly, Iowa, Diann and Michael Butters, Lincoln, Neb., Darrell and Carol Weber, Osage, and Theresa and Brian Farmer, Charles City, Iowa, Bert Miller, Bushnell, Ill.; and several nieces and nephews.
Roger was preceded in death by his parents; two sisters, JoAnne Ruhs and Karen Miller; sister-in-law, Debbie Ruhs; father-in-law, Robert Weber; and niece, Dawn Hanna.
Ward-Van Slyke Colonial Chapel, Clear Lake, was in charge of arrangements.