Edrys Heywood

Edrys Ann (Ruethin) Heywood, age 101 of Hudson, died Friday August 18th, 2017 in her home at Pine Ridge Assisted Living in Hudson, Wisconsin.

Edrys was born February 12, 1916, in Ridgeland, Wisconsin, the daughter of Knute A. Ruethin and Lillian G. Ruethin. At age 7, she moved with her parents to Barron, Wisconsin, where her father was a practicing physician. She graduated from UW-Madison with a major in English in 1938.

After a year of employment in Wheaton, Illinois, Edrys was married on June 17, 1939, to John (Jack) D. Heywood, son of John G. and Carrie Kahler Bigler Heywood in New Richmond, Wisconsin.  After several moves in Wisconsin, they settled in Hudson in 1945 where Jack practiced law and they raised their five children.

Edrys was active in the community and greatly enjoyed her family and many friends. She served on the Hudson Housing Authority of Croix View from 1975 to 1991, and on the Board for the Phipps Center for the Arts from its founding until 1990. She was active in St. Patrick’s Home and School Association, and St. Patrick’s Parish Council of Catholic Women. She later served on the building committee for the new church. She was a long-time member of the Hudson Great Books Club, the Women’s Club, and P.E.O.

Drawing and painting were life-long interests, and she became well known and highly regarded as an artist. Some of her paintings were commissioned, but most were gifted to and greatly treasured by family and friends. Edrys also loved poetry. She committed many poems to memory and presented a number of programs to groups in the area, including, at age 95, a memorized presentation of her favorite poems to the residents of Wintergreen in Hudson. Edrys also loved learning about other cultures and people. She and Jack traveled frequently around the United States, Canada, Mexico, Europe, Russia, China, Taiwan, and Japan. 

Edrys and Jack were a host family for an American Field Service (AFS) high school student, Raimund Seidel, from Graz, Austria, from 1973-1974. They also hosted a UW-River Falls graduate student from Taiwan, Nai-Ting (Ann) Chen. Maintaining relationships with both of them and their families throughout her life was a source of great joy. Another great joy was getting to know her Swedish relatives through visiting them in Sweden and hosting them in Hudson.

Edrys was preceded in death by her husband in 2001 and by two great grandchildren. She is survived by her five children: John Groves of Vancouver, Canada, Mary Edrys (James) Kubiak of Afton, MN, Ann Heywood (Gene Stanley), of Eau Claire, WI, Catherine Joan (John) Baumgartner of Olivia, MN, and Thomas Ruethin (Elizabeth) Heywood of Haines, AK; 12 grandchildren; and 15 great-grandchildren.

Mass of Christian Burial for Edrys Heywood will take place at St. Patrick’s’ Church in Hudson on Wednesday August 23rd at 11:00 AM. Visitation will be held at the O’Connell Family Funeral Home of Hudson on Tuesday, August 22nd  from 4:00 – 6:30 PM, with a prayer service at 6:30 PM, as well as one hour prior to the Mass at church. Interment will take place at St. Patrick’s Catholic Cemetery in Hudson.  Memorials are preferred to Pine Ridge Assisted Living, St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, or the Phipps Center for the Arts, all in Hudson. The family wishes to express their sincere thanks and appreciation to Pine Ridge & Adoray Hospice for their loving care.

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