Ruth Halverson Fausch

Honored by:Joan Flynn
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August 2 1901-August 8 1985

Ruth Halverson Fausch was a sincere and dedicated woman who loved and cared for her family while pursuing her career. She taught music 32 1/2 years in the community schools, helped on the farm, taught private vocal and piano lessons, played the piano and organ for church and other organizations and accompanied various musicians. Many enjoyed her beautiful soprano voice. In her sixties she even started a new teaching position in three schools.

She was an inspiration to her family students and friends. Mrs. Fausch taught three generations of children and remembered the joy and thrill of hearing children make music with their voices and instruments. Her pupils often heard her say "make the world a better place to live because you are here" and "make the most of what you have."

Ruth, daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. H.E. Halverson, grew up in the Slater area. Her education began in a rural school and continued in the Slater schools through the first two years of high school when she enrolled at Jewell Lutheran College in Jewell. Here she completed her high school course and studied piano. She then took a two-year music supervisors course at Drake University and started teaching. Continuing her studies during the summers at Iowa State College at Ames and Drake University in Des Moines she received her music degree in the college of fine arts at Drake in 1930. She also attended Drake during the summers of 1956 and 1957. Although Mrs. Fausch began her teaching in the Slater schools she had many and varied teaching experiences. In the beginning she taught music in grades 1-12 in the Slater schools while also teaching language arts and history in grades 5-8. After receiving her degree in 1930 she shifted to high school English and history along with vocal and instrumental music until January 1937.

On August 16, 1936 she was married to Lawrence E. Fausch and moved to a farm at Alleman to be a homemaker. After her marriage and the birth of two daughters Mrs. Fausch decided to return to her love of teaching music in addition to continuing her family responsibilities. She resumed her career by teaching vocal and instrumental music three years in Sheldahl and six years in Alleman. One of the special things she recalled about her experience in Sheldahl was directing the Sheldahl concert band in two concerts at the Iowa State Fair.

In 1957 she resumed teaching high school and elementary music in Slater. This was the last year the high school was still in Slater and both the director and the high school chorus were pleased to receive very favorable comments and superior ratings from the judges in music contests. The next four years she taught elementary music half days in Slater. During the last years of her career she taught vocal music at all three elementary centers of Ballard Community Schools namely Kelley Cambridge and Slater.

Since high school days Ruth was always happy to serve the church and community. She served as organist or directed choirs at Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Slater and later at the Salem United Church of Christ in Alleman. For a time she directed the Slater-Alleman-Sheldahl men's chorus. She has also directed home talent plays and musicals and continued piano and instrumental teaching. She played in the Slater Municipal Band and in orchestras. Ruth served as soprano soloist in the former Story City Circuit Choral Unions for several years under the direction of well-known musicians such as Dr. F. Melius Christianson of St. Olaf College, Dr. Carl Sperati of Luther College, Professors Oscar Lyders and Odvin Hagen of Waldorf College. The Slater Treble Clef Club now Music and Study Club started under her direction.

Ruth Halverson Fausch passed away on August 8, 1985. She is survived by her husband Lawrence and two daughters: Naomi Jeanne Oxenford and Joan Ruth Flynn. Grandchildren are Tracy Oxenford Brookes, Todd Oxenford, Kelly Oxenford, Kristin Flynn and Erin Flynn.