- About Us
Ruth Moss CleverlyMay 15, 1920 ~ November 29, 2017 (age 97)
On May 15, 1920 at precisely 11:30am a bouncy little 7 lb. girl was born to Blanche & Walter Moss. They named their daughter Ruth. She grew into the gorgeous flower called Ruth Cleverly, whom we are honoring today in this brief life sketch. She was one of 4 daughters and 2 sons – 6 total children for Blanche & Walter. Ruth was a “real good little girl”, as her mother Blanche says in her journal. She was a hard worker, never missed going to Sunday School and always tried her best at everything she did. In 1926 Ruth had her name written on the blackboard at South Bountiful grade school with a gold star by it for surpassing every other pupil in 1st grade reading. At 8 years of age Ruth took her first piano lesson and never looked back. She’s been Primary & Sunday school organist many times, played for her dancing class, accompanied and led choirs, and has done many other piano performances. To listen to Ruth play the piano is to take you back to a kinder, gentler time - she had such a lovely touch on the keys.
When Ruth was only 9 years old she sang the song “Two Little Maids” with her friend Louise Hart in an MIA program at her church. They wore little blue and white sack aprons over their dresses and sported red socks with their shoes. They were a hit! About a year later Ruth and Louise sang a duet at the Daughters of the Pioneers meeting and that night she played a piano duet with Louise at a cottage meeting. These are just two small examples of Ruth sharing her musical talent early in her life.
Ruth was taught how to cook, clean, quilt and sew by her mother. In one of her journals Ruth stated that “We are peeling peaches by the bushels. I helped mama bottle 48 quarts today.” Ruth has canned pears, pickles, jams, beets, tomatoes and fresh salsa. She was an avid baker and made delicious pies, fudge, pecan rolls, caramels, divinity, cookies and cakes. How Ruth kept her trim figure with all her amazing baking was anyone’s guess!
Ruth met her husband Irv Cleverly during one of the ward road shows. Irv was portraying Joseph Smith and Ruth was made up as an Indian. Irv asked if he could take her home after practice and that was the beginning of his courtship with Ruth Moss. After two or three dates Irv was head over heels in love with her. Irv wrote in his journal “I knew I was robbing the cradle but I couldn’t help myself. We had so much fun that summer going to Lagoon, Como Springs, Becks Hot Springs, and visiting the guys up at the sheep camp. We loved to go to Covey’s Coconut Grove and dance all the dances together.”
On December 23, 1936 sixteen year old Ruth eloped with Irvin Cleverly. This nearly broke her mother’s heart. In Blanche’s journal she wrote “It’s not that I didn’t like Irv, who was the son of one of my dearest friends, but Ruth was so young and everyone was so poor. It was during the depression and there were no jobs, but they survived and so did I.”
Although jobs were indeed scarce during that time Irv Cleverly was always a go-getter and managed to find work to support his pretty new bride. They were terribly in love and very happy. Ruth kept a spotless house and cooked the yummiest meals ever. Irv was one lucky guy and he knew it!
They had been married 4 years and had two children and both felt it was time for them to get ready to go to the temple and get married “the right way”. On Irv’s birthday in 1941 they were sealed for time and all eternity.
Three more children followed and soon the Cleverly family numbered 7. The kids were: Sheri Ann, Terry Lynn, Irvin Gregg, Julie Rae and Susan. Each child was such a joy and delight to Ruth and Irv.
While Irv worked hard to support the family by running his own supermarket Ruth was busy helping him in the store and tending to the needs of their children. She also served faithfully in church callings and still did lots of music. In 1947 Ruth sang in General Conference with a “Singing Mothers” group. Ruth was also the Young Women President at that time.
Ruth and Irv loved to bowl and they have many 1st place trophies in bowling leagues, won together as a couple and for Ruth and her bowling ladies. With her sparkling wit and fun personality Ruth had plenty of friends.
Ruth’s favorite sports teams were:
-Baseball: Atlanta Braves
-Basketball: Utah Jazz
-BYU football and basketball
Ruth’s family would often come over and watch the games on TV with her. She was a faithful sports fan her entire life. I don’t think Ruth ever missed a Jazz game on TV and she enjoyed hollering for her Jazz boys.
Ruth’s children got married and provided her with grand-children and then great-grandchildren. She had 10 grand children and 20 great-grandchildren. She loved her progeny so much and did everything she could to make them feel special. She would have barbecues in the back yard, let the kids play downstairs with all her toys, teach the kids how to cook if they were so inclined, give wonderful gifts at birthdays and Christmas, write loving letters to each child and more. Ruth truly deserved the title bestowed upon her as “World’s Greatest Grandmother".
Ruth became acquainted with heartache when she prematurely lost two of her precious children – daughters Julie and Sheri. This was devastating to everyone but especially to Ruth.
In 1981 Ruth & Irv served a mission at the California, Los Angeles Temple. They enjoyed this service very much and were quite smitten with the mild weather in California. They also worked in the Salt Lake Temple in Utah.
After 64 years of marriage Ruth’s husband Irv passed away in 2000. Now Ruth was left to her own devices without her loving mate by her side. What she did was to continue to serve in the church, play piano and direct choirs when asked, spends loads of time with her children and dote lovingly on her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. The most heavenly aromas still wafted out of her kitchen and her house was still “Grand Central” for her large family.
Christmas was extra special at Ruth’s house so everyone always congregated there. Christmas Eve featured a musical program and there was much love in the air. The highlight was always when Ruth would go to the piano and everyone would sing Christmas songs while she tinkled the keys.
Once a week Ruth hosted a Game Night, where her 3 adult children and families would come to play cards with her. Ruth also played cards with her brother Sherm on a weekly basis. The best sport at the table was always Ruth but she was also competitive and she knew how to take anyone down. This she did so sweetly that no one cared that they lost to her.
The years sped by and pretty soon Ruth was in her 90’s. This did not slow her down much and she was still spotted outside weeding, still got her hair done, still made homemade caramels and still kept the cleanest house this side of the Mississippi.
Finally – at age 97 – Ruth was forced to truly slow down. However, her mind was still as sharp as a tack and she was the same feisty, loving mother and grandmother. Being the hard worker that she always was Ruth felt guilty that she couldn’t clean as deeply nor cook as much. Her family was just so grateful to have her for so many extra years.
On November 29th, 2017 Ruth Cleverly left this world to join her husband, daughters and loved ones in her heavenly home. She will be greatly missed.
Funeral services will be held on Monday, December 4th at 12:00pm at the Woods Cross 2nd ward house at 790 West 1500 South, Woods Cross. A short viewing will be held prior to the services from 10:45-11:45am.
Interment will be held at the Bountiful City Cemetery
A viewing will be held Sunday, December 3rd from 6-8:00pm at Russon Brothers Mortuary@ 295 North Main St., Bountiful.