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Ruth Pedersen

Ruth Pedersen, 85, of Northwood, ND passed away Monday, April 24, 2017 at Northwood Deaconess Health Center in Northwood. Funeral service will be held Friday, April 28, 2017 at 2:00 p.m. at Northwood Evangelical Lutheran Church in Northwood. A visitation will be held from 12:00 p.m. until the time of the service at the church.

Ruth Eileen Nelson was born on August 20, 1931 in Grand Forks, ND to Arthur S. and Margaret (Geddes) Nelson. She grew up on the Nelson farm near Northwood, ND and confirmed her faith in the Northwood Evangelical Lutheran Church in 1945. She graduated from Northwood High School in 1949, worked one year for her father in the Northwood Farm Supply Office and then attended the University of North Dakota where she graduated summa cum laude in 1954. She majored in Business Administration and minored in English and French.

On June 6, 1954, she married Willard Pedersen, the son of Arlie and Cora Pedersen, also of Northwood. They made their home in Northwood until 1961 when they moved to the Nelson farm. In 1978 they moved back into Northwood. Since 1996 they have spent winters in Sun Lakes, AZ, returning to Northwood for the summers.

Willard and Ruth farmed in the Northwood area. In addition Ruth taught in the Northwood High School from 1958 to 1964. She served as the Northwood Evangelical Lutheran Church secretary from 1966 to 1976. Beginning in 1974 she worked many years during the tax season as a tax accountant for Johnson and Lawrence Law.

Ruth enjoyed her membership in the NELC women's group and the GFWC Northwood Literary Club. She also enjoyed bridge playing in two bridge clubs, reading, crossword puzzles, Hardanger stitchery and recording Northwood history, co-authoring the Northwood History Book and the Northwood Tornado Book. Ruth just loved this town.

Ruth is survived by her husband Willard, her daughter Jan (Paul) Steffen of Plymouth, MN, her son Scott (LuAnn) Pedersen of Northwood, granddaughters Shawn Thorvilson of Larimore, Betsey (Derek) Gillespie of Northwood, grandson Bryan Pedersen of Northwood, great grandchildren Derek, Jaden and Hunter Thorvilson and McKayla Gillespie, sister-in-law Audrey Nelson of Fargo, nieces Kris (Greg) Troland of West Fargo, Kathy (Cornell) Hofer of Fargo, Karla (Doug) Lewton of Bison, SD, and nephew Mitchell Nelson of Grand Forks. She was preceded in death by her parents and her brother Norval Nelson.


Friday, April 28, 2017
12:00 PM - 2:00 PM

Northwood Evangelical Lutheran Church
307 Second Ave
Northwood, ND 58267

Funeral Service

Friday, April 28, 2017
2:00 PM

Northwood Evangelical Lutheran Church
307 Second Ave
Northwood, ND 58267

To plant memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Ruth Pedersen, please visit our flower store.


our sympathy on the passing of Ruth. May the Lord comfort your family in this time of grief.

Maggie & Jerry Bergene Apr 29 2017 12:00 AM

Dear Willard and Family, I was so sorry to learn of Ruth's passing. It was always a joy to see her warm smile and she was always a perfect hostess! In spite of being a UND grad--Ruth was always there cheering on the Bison! I know you will all miss her but celebrate the many wonderful memories you have had together! Claudia

Claudia Anderson Apr 29 2017 12:00 AM

Dear Willard, Our deepest sympathy to you and the entire Pedersen family. Ruth was a wonderful person and will be deeply missed by everyone. We always enjoyed receiving her Christmas cards to update us on your year. We are so sorry for your loss. God Bless You.

Lorraine and Cheryl Pederson Apr 28 2017 12:00 AM

Willard and family, Please accept our sincere condolences. We will always remember Ruth's gentle soul and her generosity in the community. Keith and Julie Maristuen Schneller

Julie Maristuen Schneller Apr 26 2017 12:00 AM

Ruth was an amazing person, beautiful inside and out. My thoughts are with you all during this sad time. She'll be greatly missed.

Linda Tinderholt Apr 25 2017 12:00 AM

Willard so sorry to hear about Ruth, prayers for you and your family. I was just in Northwood briefly this weekend and both my parents were really sad talking about all the fun times and hours you spent together playing cards. God Bless you all in this difficult time.

Jay W. Johnson Apr 25 2017 12:00 AM

So sorry Scott and Luann for your loss, I wish you all the best that this part of our life journey can show us.

Gary Olson Apr 25 2017 12:00 AM

Please except our sympathies. We will miss Ruth. She was always a delight to talk to at OFA meetings. You and Ruth were gracious hosts to us in Arizona when we visited. We are blessed to have been able to know her.

John & Joan Maxwell Apr 25 2017 12:00 AM

Willard and Family, our deepest sympathies to you all. Ruth was a wonderful person and we shall treasure her friendship forever. We are sure that she is already working on a Heavenly ND-SD Dinner Party. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. She is in Jesus tender care now.

Steve & Marianne Perkins Apr 25 2017 12:00 AM

Willard and Family, Sending my thoughts, prayers, and sympathies to you on the passing of Ruth. You've been such close friends with my parents and Ruth will be truly missed by them in so many ways. Her countless devotion to all the activities and volunteerism in Northwood won't go unnoticed. It will be hard to fill her shoes in all she has done. Please know we're thinking of you all. Blessings, Ericka Johnson Anderson

Ericka Johnson Anderson Apr 25 2017 12:00 AM

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