Where Food, Drinks & Stories Are Shared

Ruth Nemeth

August 24, 1929 - July 30, 2018
Kalamazoo, MI



Friday, August 3, 2018
10:00 AM to 11:00 AM EDT
Betzler Life Story Funeral Homes
Kalamazoo Location
6080 Stadium Drive
Kalamazoo, MI 49009
(269) 375-2900
Driving Directions


Friday, August 3, 2018
11:30 AM EDT
Mt. Ever Rest Cemetery
3941 S Westnedge Ave.
Kalamazoo, MI 49008


At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.

Alzheimer's Association - Michigan Great Lakes Chapter
200 Turwill Ln Suite 6
Kalamazoo, MI 49006
(269) 342-1482
Driving Directions
Web Site


Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.

1830 S. Westnedge
Kalamazoo, MI 49008
(269) 349-4961
Driving Directions
Web Site

Life Story / Obituary


Jolly, friendly, and happy, Ruth Nemeth, lived a wholehearted life rich in love for others. A woman who never knew a stranger, Ruth always had a warm hello and a kind ear to share. With a deep devotion to being of service to others, Ruth embraced life’s joys and challenges equally, recognizing the gifts in both and inspiring others by her example. Deeply treasured, Ruth leaves behind a brilliant legacy of beautiful memories her loved ones will forever hold as priceless gifts.

The beginning of 1929 continued to ride the decade’s roaring wave of peace, prosperity, and hope. The nation celebrated the recent inventions of Penicillin, the iron lung, bubble gum, and the Yo-Yo, as well as Charles Lindbergh’s Congressional Medal of Honor and Amelia Earhart becoming the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic. As the wave of sweeping social and economic growth rapidly increased nowhere was there more hope for the future than in the Charlestown, Indiana home of Charlie and Vangie (Hurt) Huff as they joyfully welcomed their daughter Ruth into their hearts and home on August 24th.

Growing up as one of 11 children, Ruth learned the values of family and hard work from her very earliest days. The family resided in Burksville, Kentucky where her father worked as a dairy and tobacco farmer. Like many farm kids of her era, Ruth’s days were filled with many, many chores. She was also responsible for helping raise her younger siblings. Whether cooking, cleaning, tending to the kids, or helping harvest the tobacco, Ruth possessed a can-do attitude that the family came to count on.

As a teen, Ruth headed north and settled in South Bend, Indiana where she was blessed to meet the love of her life, Gene Nemeth. The young pair began to date and soon started planning a future together. On October 10, 1950, Ruth and Gene exchanged marriage vows and started their 42 adventure together. An adventure which began with Gene being promptly deployed to Korea. Fortunately, he returned safely, and the happy couple was reunited.

In 1959, Ruth and Gene moved to Kalamazoo where he and his business partner, Bruno, started Bruno’s Pizza. Gene bought Bruno out during the business’ early years, and he and Ruth worked side by side, often with the help of their children, for over 20 years. The couple lived and worked together spending 24 hours a day, seven days a week in each other’s company. A natural people person, Ruth loved serving the community, cooking for others, and watching the families who became regulars grow.

While Ruth rarely knew leisure time, she enjoyed using the time she found here and there to make doll clothes and tend the garden. Always a “little hillbilly southern girl,” Ruth loved the simple things in life. She relished in a good harvest, time with family, looking her best, and cooking up a great meal for those she loved. She and Gene enjoyed canning, and their canned tomatoes were unrivaled. Over the years, Ruth amassed a beautiful collection of cups and saucers. In later years, she spent many an hour following her favorite CBS soap operas including The Young and the Restless, As the World Turns, The Bold and the Beautiful, and Guiding Light.

When Gene became ill with a brain tumor, Ruth lovingly cared for him with a firm resolve to keep him as comfortable as possible for each of his days. In 1992, Ruth had to say her final goodbye to Gene and begin life in his absence. Though the loss was enormous, Ruth leaned into her new life with signature joy. She found delight in sharing time with friends and family especially if it meant she could feed them a meal she’d enthusiastically prepared.

For a time, Ruth enjoyed the good company of her pretty dog, Makayla. The spunky Pomeranian afforded her much joy. She also enjoyed a close relationship with her daughter Barb. Any time spent with Barb was a good time. They were blessed to make memorable road trips together including to the home of Longaberger and Shipshewana. They also enjoyed going out for dinner.

Ruth took excellent care of herself and had the best hair which proved the perfect frame for her welcoming smile. Even when dementia began to take over her life in 2011, Ruth consistently found the gold in each moment. In doing so, she taught others to do so as well.

The world is undoubtedly duller in the absence of Ruth’s steadfast light. Though she will be dearly missed, she will be lovingly remembered. Whether it be sharing time with family, exploring the treasures in Shipsy, enjoying a good meal, or picking the season’s plump tomatoes, Ruth’s family and friends will long feel the eternal spark of her legacy in their hearts and lives.

Ruth Nemeth, age 88, died peacefully on July 30, 2018, in Kalamazoo. Ruth was born August 24, 1929, in Charleston, IN, the daughter of Charlie and Vangie (Hurt) Huff. Ruth was preceded in death by her husband, Gene Nemeth in 1992; son, David Johnson and 4 siblings. Surviving are 2 children: Barbara Nemeth and David Nemeth; 5 grandchildren; 4 great-grandchildren; brother, Carl Huff; 4 sisters: Mona Miller, Betsy Fox, Doris (Mike) Weddle and Sharon (Mike) Pace and many nieces and nephews. Visit with family and friends on Friday from 10AM – 11AM at the Betzler Life Story Funeral Home, 6080 Stadium Dr. Kalamazoo (269) 375-2900. Graveside services will follow at Mt. Everest Cemetery. Please visit Ruth’s personal web page at www.BetzlerFuneralHome.com, where you can read her story, archive a favorite memory or photo and sign his online guestbook before coming to the funeral home. Memorial contributions may be made to Alzheimer’s Association of Southwest Michigan