Ray M. James, Eugene, OR
It is with a feeling of great loss that we must report to her many friends in the American Rhododendron Society, the death of Ruth Lyons, on November 20, 1983.
Ruth and her late husband, Marshall W. Lyons were Charter members of the Society and helped in many ways to bring the Society to its present status as an international group. They worked as a team to collect, hybridize, and grow rare and beautiful Rhododendron plants at a time when not too many women were involved in the fascinating hobby. Ruth was no stranger to a shovel or wheelbarrow and spent many hours helping to develop their hillside home into one of the most beautiful spots to be seen. She furnished space and cookies for early group meetings to encourage the interest in the growing American Rhododendron Society and was vitally involved in the establishing of Hendricks Park Rhododendron Garden located in Eugene, Oregon.
When Marshall's health began to fail, Ruth carried on the work in which she was so interested and continued to do so after she and Marshall sold their home in Eugene, Oregon and moved to Renton, Washington to be near their son Jack. A selected form of R. davidsonianum from her garden is now registered as 'Ruth Lyons', and is considered to be one of the finest plants available. Its special beauty will forever be a reminder of Ruth and her happy eventful life.