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Ruth Pettit Johnson

March 16, 1928 ~ May 7, 2017 (age 89)

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Ruth Pettit Johnson passed away on May 7th 2017. She was born in Woodstown, NJ on March 16, 1928. Ruth grew up on her parent’s Frances Coles and Frank Pettit’s dairy farm along with two older sisters, Elizabeth Pettit Darlington, Marion Pettit Frazier, and her younger brother Elmer Pettit. Ruth graduated from Woodstown High School and earned a BS at Ursinus College. She married Ralph B Johnson in 1950 and started a family in Petoskey, Michigan before moving back to South Jersey.

The moving resumed in 1961 when Ralph accepted assignments with the American Friends Service Committee in Jordan, then with USAID in Nepal and Nigeria. Naturally gregarious and community-oriented, Ruth made homes and friends in other countries until the family settled near Dover, Delaware in 1972.

A life-long Quaker and member of Camden Friends Meeting, the Peace and Social Concerns Committee was her greatest passion. A political activist, Ruth was the “heart and soul” of the Women League of Voters of Kent County for over forty years, recruiting and inspiring others.

Ruth played tennis all her life. She and Ralph competed in the Delaware Senior Olympics and in the Nationals. After Ralph’s retirement, they operated a Christmas Tree farm and worked a large vegetable garden, sharing its bounty with friends and neighbors.

Ruth is survived by daughter Jill Johnson, son Eric Johnson, granddaughter Hillary Johnson and sister-in-law Margaret Sandersen.

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