Ruth Ann Behlen

Ruth Ann Behlen

June 7, 1926-July 18, 2019

Ruth Ann (Wilke) Behlen, 93, died Thursday, July 18, 2019, at her rural Columbus home of 73 years.

The funeral service will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Monday, July 22, at Shell Creek Baptist Church in rural Columbus, with the Rev. Clyde Zimbelman officiating. Interment will be in the parish cemetery. Visitation will be from 5-7 p.m. on Sunday, July 21, at Gass Haney Funeral Home, and will continue from 9:30 a.m. until service time on Monday at the church. There will be a family prayer service at 10:15 a.m. on Monday at the church. Memorials are suggested to Shell Creek Baptist Church or the donor's choice.

Ruth Ann was born June 7, 1926, in Platte County, to Gottlieb and Ruth (Kuehnert) Wilke, the oldest of seven children. She attended Christ Lutheran Grade School. Before attending school, she had to learn English, as she was taught German when learning to speak. Ruth Ann always valued her Christian education. She boarded in Columbus while attending Kramer High School, graduating in 1944.

At a young age, Ruth Ann learned to can fruit, iron clothes, and take care of her brothers and sisters. She enjoyed ice skating down Loseke Creek at recess, fishing in Shell Creek, and going to her grandma and grandpa Wilke's house every Sunday afternoon to play with her many cousins.

Ruth Ann was united in marriage to George Edward Behlen on Oct. 30, 1945. They were blessed with 61 years of marriage and with two children, Myron George and Miriam Jane. Ruth Ann and George worked alongside each other on the farm. She had 700 laying hens and milked cows. Ruth Ann was also an Amway distributor and enjoyed the many friends she made calling them her “Amway Family.”

George and Ruth Ann liked to travel and spend time in Arizona where George died unexpectedly in 2007. Ruth Ann continued going to Arizona with her sister, Margaret.

Ruth Ann enjoyed her flowers, vegetable garden, refinishing furniture, and cooking family dinners. In her later years, she enjoyed playing cards with family. Her grandchildren were her greatest joy.

Ruth Ann was a member of Shell Creek Baptist Church where she taught Sunday school, served as coordinator for the scripture memory program, church secretary, and various positions of the Women's Missionary Fellowship. She was also a member of the Auxiliary of the Gideon's International. Throughout her life, witnessing and the study of God's word was a high priority of hers.

Ruth Ann, a devoted mother, grandmother, sister, and aunt, is survived by son, Myron (Linda) Behlen; daughter, Miriam (Rod) Flodman; grandchildren: Brent (Jaci) Behlen, Grant (Angie) Behlen, Hope (Jared) Carlson, and Hunter (Nichole) Flodman; great-grandchildren: Kim (Kyle) Buss, Jocilynn, Brogan, Brooke, Dayna, and Kendra Behlen, Sehren, Kisaac, Mindah, and Amalie Carlson, Alec, Emma, and Leah Flodman; great-great-grandchildren: Ann, Anaiah, Aliyah, and Wyatt Buss; sister, Margaret Olson; brothers, Theodore Wilke and Walter (Arlene) Wilke; sisters-in-law, Carolyn Wilke, Janice Wilke and Norma Jean Wilke; many nieces and nephews.

Ruth Ann was preceded in death by parents, Gottlieb and Ruth Wilke; husband, George Behlen; brothers, Robert and Julian Wilke; sister, Gretchen (Billy) Schroeder; brothers-in-law , Albert Olson, Elmer (Virgie) Behlen, Loren (Evelyn) Behlen; nephews, James Wilke, Carroll Behlen, John Matteson; niece, Janelle Wilke.

Condolences may be sent to www.gasshaney.com

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