Ruth Stimson        
Retirement #1        
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Retiring, But Not Slowing Down, Part 1

picture Retirement cake decorated with Extension Service seal
When Ruth retired, 170 people attended the surprise party, bringing her cards and gifts. The cake, made by Charlene Smith, was something to see. "She decorated it beautifully with the Extension Service seal in colors," Ruth says.

Ruth wrote a 40th anniversary message reflecting on her career, in which she offers the following thought: "We must periodically re-educate ourselves to our environment, or we may be overwhelmed by the frequency of change and the abundance of knowledge. She closes by saying: "Home should be the center of one's earth, but not its circumference."

Newspaper articles recounted Ruth's accomplishments:

picture Ruth, far right, at Rockingham Craftsmen sale
While Ruth still enjoyed the challenges and satisfaction of her job, she was happy about retiring. A June 1982 article in the Derry News states: "Retirement will offer Ruth Stimson more time to indulge in her other loves: gardening (she has built a solar greenhouse), compiling a pictorial history of New Hampshire - from 1600 to the present - with slides, and traveling."

On October 14, 14 days after Ruth retired, she was quoted in an article in the Plaistow/Hampstead News - "'I get satisfaction from building fires under people,' says Ruth Stimson, Rockingham County Home Extension Agent who retired this month following 40 years as an agent."

The writer, Marlise Swartz, continues: "It isn't surprising. Just to talk with her made me want to do something - anything. After all, here is a woman, retiring to a well-deserved rest and her plans would make a person half her age weary."

Find out why in Part 2.