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Ronald L. Ruedger

August 17, 1944 November 18, 2020
Ronald L. Ruedger
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Obituary for Ronald L. Ruedger

Ronald Louis Ruedger of Brighton, Michigan passed away on Wednesday, November 18, 2020 at the age of 76. After a 3 week heroic fight, Ronald died at Saint Joseph Mercy Hospital from complications from Covid-19.
Ronald was born in Carson City, Michigan on August 17, 1944, to father Louis William and mother June Stella. The oldest of six siblings, Ron developed strong leadership skills and cultivated a remarkable life through hard work and through a term he created called “pernactity” (persistent and tenacious). He spent time as a child on his grandparent’s farm in Carson City helping with chores and swimming in Fish Creek. As his family grew, they moved to a house in East Detroit, Michigan. When Ron turned 17, he graduated from East Detroit High School. This is the time he met the love of his life, Marlene Ruth Butts. Ron and Marlene celebrated 51 years of life together. Shortly after their wedding, Ron joined the Navy where they were stationed at a Naval base in Millington, Tennessee.
During time in the Navy, Ron specialized in radio and electronics. Their first child Michele was born on the naval base in Millington and Ron Jr, came three years later when they were restationed at the Naval base in Brunswick, Georgia. After an honorable discharge, Ron and family returned to Michigan and Ron started his successful career at Detroit Edison. Together with Marlene, they saved and worked hard to purchase their first home in Ypsilanti, Michigan. For 23 years, this home was the source of love, joy and countless family gatherings.
Ron continued to work for Detroit Edison until his retirement. Throughout these years he climbed the company ladder. He graduated with honors from Cleary College and was promoted to Director of System Operations. Ron worked hard but he also prioritized a work life balance. He had a zest for life, was a thrill seeker and loved a good adventure.
One of Ron’s mottos was, “he who dies with the most toys wins”. This was evident throughout his life. He had motorcycles, competed in motocross and rode ATV’s. He owned many snowmobiles over his life time. The last of which he rode 100 miles an hour with his hair on fire. He snowmobiled for pleasure with family as well as taking trips across the United States to snowmobile with a tight knit group of friends called the “Dirty Dozen.” He became a VFR pilot and owned Piper and Cessna airplanes. Ron loved the water. While living in Ypsilanti, he had a pool and joined Chippewa Swim Club so his family could enjoy the water together. Ron became PADI certified and scuba dove in oceans, seas, lakes and quarries. He owned multiple boats. The most special of them being the African Queen. Known as Captain Ron, memories of a life time were made on this boat. With the love of the outdoors in his heart, Ron spent a lot of his leisure time camping. He camped in a pop up camper, fifth wheel and most recently acquired an RV. Deer hunting season was an annual event that he looked forward to. The time in the woods and camaraderie with dear friends at Houghton Lake were special to him.
Ron loved the North and the South. He and Marlene built the North House in 1983. This home had special meaning for Ron and was the source for memories made for family and friends. During their retirement, Ron and Marlene became semi snowbirds and spent time in their condo in Deerfield Beach, Florida. He spent his time there either in the pool or on his boat on the intercostal waterway or on the Atlantic.
Compassion and caring for others, Ron made a difference through philanthropic endeavors. He was a volunteer fireman for Superior Township. He saved lives while serving the community he lived in. When living in Canton, Ron volunteered for many years at Saint John Neumann church preparing funeral lunches. At Christmas time, Ron and Marlene raised money for the Salvation Army while ringing the bells as Santa and Mrs. Claus. At Detroit Edison, Ron worked with aspiring teenagers for internships. He served on multiple home association boards and always was always looking out for others. It was not hard for Ron to make a friend or make someone feel special. He had an innate quality to bring out the best in everyone he was with.
Ron’s love for his family was part of his core values and his legacy will live on through all of them. The time he spent with his two children while raising them was a commitment of love and steadfast enrichment. Ron was always supportive and encouraged them to be the best they could be. Another family motto he used was, “when the going gets tough, the tough gets going!” His first three grandchildren born, he nicknamed after his north and hunting passion; Buck, Spike and Fawn. He became “Poppa the great,” to all his grandchildren and great grandchildren. His extended family were a priority for him. He looked out for them, guided them and loved them. He would ask all his nieces and nephews, “who’s your favorite uncle!”
Ron was preceded in death by his wife, Marlene Ruth Ruedger, his son, Ronald Louis Ruedger Jr, his parents William Louis Ruedger and June Stella Johnston, his sister, Cynthia Burns, his brother Louis Ruedger Jr, and his grandson, Daniel Raymond Prichard Jr.
Ron is survived by his daughter, Michele Bachman (Andy), grandchildren, Alexander Ruedger (Katie), Victoria Skeels (Zack), Emma Kirschner (Adam), Anna Ruedger. great grandchildren, Madison Skeels, Hannah Skeels, Carolina Rose, Eleanor Ruedger and Sydnee Skeels, brother, Kimber Ruedger, and John Ruedger (Jeanette), sister Maribeth Higbee (Jon) and best friend, Charlene Schindler.
Due to current recommendations for community health, there will not be a service. Ron will be interred at Washtenong Memorial Park, Redemption mausoleum in a crypt with his wife Marlene. Both of them would gladly welcome visitors. A celebration of Ron’s life will occur in the future when it is safe for his family and friends to be together.
People wishing to contribute a memorial donation for Ron, may donate to the American Diabetes Foundation at Diabetes.org.

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Events

Event Information

Services are private.

Cemetery Details

Location

Washtenong Memorial Park Final Resting Place

3771 Whitmore Lake Rd.
Ann Arbor, MI 48105

3771 Whitmore Lake Rd. Ann Arbor 48105 MI
United States

Memorial Contribution

American Diabetes Association

P.O. Box 15829
Arlington, VA 22215
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