May 22, 2014
Ruth Beach, a member of the Scribner Library staff died May 21, 2014, at home, surrounded
by her family.
Ruth was born August 25, 1938, in Corinth, N.Y., and joined the Skidmore community in 1962, working in the business office on the old campus for a decade. In 1971, she took a position as secretary to head librarian Alvin Skipsna, and remained in that position when David Eyman became head librarian in 1984. Said David, “It became apparent quickly that Ruth had more ability than the position demanded, and when the position of head of circulation opened up, I managed to move her there. To say that she was successful would be an understatement. Everybody loved her in that position.”
During this period Ruth developed throat cancer and underwent a laryngectomy. One close Skidmore friend, Joyce Casertino of IT, recalled, “Ruth was told she would never be able to work again. She not only returned to her job at Skidmore, but also to her second job at the Saratoga harness track.” David said, “Ruth used a mechanical device to speak. She came to me and asked what I wanted her to do. I suggested she continue to work as long as she wanted to. As far as I was concerned, she was still the most qualified person for the job. So she continued as head of circulation,” and held that title until her retirement in June 1997.
Ruth’s survivors include her husband, John; son Robert and daughter-in-law Sandie Brown, also a member of the Scribner Library staff; daughter Ruthie Brewer and stepdaughter Tracy Piche; seven grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren. In addition, two sisters, a brother, and longtime Skidmore friends Joyce Casertino and Walter Marchewka and their families are among Ruth’s survivors.
Private services were held May 27.