Ruth Hayes

NORWAY – Ruth Hayes, 92, of Norway, died Sunday, May 5, 2013, at Freeman Nursing and Rehabilitation in Kingsford.

She was born in Detroit on April 16, 1921, the daughter of the late Edward and Pearl (Miller) Forbes.

She graduated from Harper Hospital School of Nursing.

Ruth married Willard N. Hayes, MD on Aug. 9, 1943, in Detroit. He preceded her in death on April 20, 1982.

After Ruth and Willard got married, they loaded up a car and trailer and proceeded to travel the country side looking for a place to live. After touring the country, they chose Norway.

Ruth attended Grace United Methodist Church in Norway for more than 55 years; she taught Sunday School for more than 50 years, and she was in the choir and Wesylan Service Guild.

She was involved actively in 4-H for many years as a 4-H leader and taught cooking, sewing, and supported members of the horse and beef clubs.

She spent her life serving others; her home was an open door for many children, and adults of Norway. Her stationwagon usually filled taking people someplace.

Ruth was active in Big Brothers/Big Sisters as a “Big” and on the board of directors. Along with her friend Nada Larson, she taught sewing in special needs school for more than 20 years.

She loved music, starting in high school earning many honors playing her viola in the Detroit All City Orchestra, Wayne All County Orchestra, and selected for the All American Orchestra.

Ruth was a member of the Iron Mountain Music Club, played in the orchestra for several community theater productions and sang for many years in the Dickinson Co. Community Chorus.

Throughout her life, she received many honors in the community, and was chosen as Dickinson County representative during the Michigan Sesquicentennial as an unsung woman honored by the Governor’s wife.

Ruth is survived by her children Penny Lambert, Margaret “Peggy” Hayes, Dr. Paul (Donna) Hayes, Peter Hayes, Kathleen (Dennis) Bal and foster daughter, Delia Chippewa; grandchildren Joseph (Mickey Parker) Lambert, David Hayes, Forrest (Kelly) Hayes, Benjamin (Christine) Hayes, Zachariah, and Magdalene Hayes, Sarah (Mike) Eversole, Rebecca (Sean) Bailey, and Phillip, William and Matthew Bal; 26 great-grandchildren; and a sister Virginia (Cliff) Haycock.

A committal service was held on Thursday, May 9 at 11:30 a.m. at the Norway Township Cemetery.

Visitation was also held on Thursday from 1 p .m. to 3 p.m. at the Grace United Methodist Church in Norway.

Funeral services were held at 3 p.m. Thursday at the church with Pastor Irene White presiding.

Condolences to the family of Ruth Hayes may be expressed online at

Arrangements were announced by the Ortman Funeral Home in Norway.