Ruth Ann Steinberg died peacefully at the Jewish Home of Rochester on April 24, 2023, at the age of 98. She was the beloved wife of 68 years to the late Bernard Steinberg, mother and mother-in-law to Michael (Loret), Judy Woodruff (Glenn), and Susan Scribner (Christopher), and grandmother to Sarah, Paul, Micah, Abby, Daniel, Raimi and Kiri.
Ruth was born on December 7, 1924, in New York City. Her father, Michael Azif, died soon after she was born, and she lived with relatives until her mother, Esther Kadushin Azif, had established a flower store in Stamford, Connecticut, and was able to provide for herself and her children. Ruth earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Connecticut, where she was a member of the AEPhi sorority. She and Bernie famously met through family connections. She saw him for the first time soon after his discharge from the Army. He was wearing combat boots while reading Ladies Home Journal, and she said to herself, “That’s the man I’m going to marry.” Nine months later, her prediction came true.
After Ruth and Bernie married in 1946, they moved to Champaign, Illinois, where Ruth worked at the university Hillel while Bernie completed his doctorate in microbiology. The family moved to New Brunswick, New Jersey; Cincinnati, Ohio; and finally to Delmar, New York, where Ruth lived for 58 years.
In her late 40’s Ruth went back to school and earned a master’s degree in education from the College of Saint Rose in Albany. She taught business skills in the Voorheesville school district and at the Glenmont Job Corps Center, finishing her career as a budget analyst for the New York State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse.
Always eager for knowledge and armed with excellent organizational skills, Ruth was proud to have played a significant role in the founding of the Humanities Institute for Lifelong Learning in Delmar after her retirement. She was also integral in the development of the Tri-Village Jewish Association when she first moved to Delmar.
Ruth loved gardening, baking, playing bridge, and attending theater arts performances. She and her beloved Bernie traveled abroad together to England, France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, and Israel. She remained interested in news and politics well into her mid-90s.
Ruth had a strong sense of fairness and never hesitated to speak up when she perceived injustice. She will be remembered for her fierce personality, her passion for learning, and her love for Bernie and their children.
Interment will be private. Tributes to Ruth can be paid by making a donation in her memory to the American Civil Liberties Union.
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