Ruth Helen Dalbey, 92, passed away July 5, 2017 in San Luis Obispo, CA after a brief illness. She was born on the family ranch near Hesperia, CA in 1925. The family moved soon after to Watsonville, where Ruth Helen grew up and met her high school sweetheart, Howard Dalbey. They were married in 1943.
Ruth Helen and Howard lived briefly in Delray Beach, FL, until Howard was deployed to the South Pacific during WWII. During the war, Ruth Helen worked repairing aircraft at the Salinas, CA airfield.
After the war, Ruth Helen and Howard returned to Watsonville, together building their own home and raising a son and daughter. Moving to San Luis Obispo, CA in 1961, Howard earned a Mechanical Engineering degree while Ruth Helen cared for the family and home, also using her skills of sewing, mending, and ironing to supplement the family income. After Howard’s graduation, they lived up and down the West Coast, eventually retiring to Los Osos, CA in November of 1982.
Ruth Helen and Howard were both active in the PG&E Retirees group of San Luis Obispo and both loved gardening, aqua kinetics courses, camping in the Sierras, and traveling throughout the U.S. and abroad. Ruth Helen was an artist with needlecrafts, enjoyed baking, and raised beautiful orchids, African violets, and other houseplants.
After some years as primary caregiver to Howard, Ruth Helen was a Senior Nutrition volunteer, delivering meals in Los Osos. Ruth Helen moved to San Luis Obispo in 2015.
Ruth Helen was preceded in death by husband Howard, and two sisters Wilma Lund of Soquel; and Hazelle Cissna of Watsonville. She is survived by her two children, John Dalbey and Jessica Carson.
A memorial service and Celebration of Life will be held August 19th at 2:00 PM at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, 2201 Lawton Avenue, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401. Per Ruth Helen’s request, donations may be made in lieu of flowers to the Children’s Home Society of California, www.chs-ca.org.