Eileen Ruffing’s love of music spanned her entire life, from bugging her mother for a clarinet at an early age, to teaching music while still in high school and on to various musical positions with the Highland Local School District.
Ruffing embodied music while she educated over three decades of students, co-workers and community. Alumnus Stephanie (Armstrong) Sinks sums up the dedication displayed by the late educator, “Music was the way she interacted in the world. Music was her life.” Ruffing passed April 10, after a brief battle with cervical cancer.
Whether it was teaching music, directing concert or marching band, piano playing, mentoring or tending to the million and one small details that needed attention, Ruffing was quick to give her all, smile, and dive right in to make order of chaos.
An active member of her church, St. Vincent De Paul of Mt. Vernon, Ohio, Ruffing continued to share the music of her soul with her those around her through faithful service.
Fr. Ronald A. Schock, who lovingly performed the Mass of Christian Burial on April 15 at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Monoreville, Ohio, eulogized Ruffing most appropriately:
“Her life was highlighted with notes of love, sharing her gifts with others. The crescendo was her service to others… Eileen touched the hearts of others and while her music may have grown dim, her melody lives on.”
Eileen Ruffing is survived by her mother, Evelyn A. Ruffing, sisters, Sr. Joella Marie Ruffing, Donna Loux and brothers, Anthony Ruffing and Andrew Ruffing , as well as nieces, nephews, cousins and other loving family. Father, Francis Ruffing was laid to rest in 2008.
Memory Contributions may be directed to: The Window Restoration Fund, c/o St. Joseph Catholic Church.
“Through words, acts and music, those left are inspired to carry on the message to others and this is Eileen’s Song,” said Schock.