Catholic 01

Ruth Margaret Silvee Ryland

October 17, 1921 ~ February 26, 2022 (age 100)

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Ruth Margaret Silvee Ryland, 100, went to the Lord on February 26, 2022. She was born to Manuel George Silvee and Angela (Cisneros) Silvee on October 17, 1921, in San Antonio, Texas. She was raised in Galveston, Texas and attended Phillips University in Enid, Oklahoma, where in 1945 she earned a bachelor’s degree in English.

In 1941, she met her husband, Raymond Olin Ryland, a fellow student at Phillips. Shortly thereafter, Ray joined the U.S. Navy and served as an officer during World War II. During the years Ray was stationed on an aircraft carrier in the Pacific theater, Ruth corresponded with him and they fell in love, marrying near the war’s end on July 28, 1945, in San Francisco.

Afterward, while Ray pursued a divinity degree at Union Theological Seminary in New York City, Ruth earned a master’s degree in early child development from Columbia University and taught kindergarten in Harlem. They then moved to the Washington, D.C. area where Ray became rector of Trinity Episcopal Church in 1952. Three of their five children were born during this time. They moved in 1956 to Beaumont, Texas, where Ray served as the first rector of St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church. It was here Ruth gave birth to their fourth child.

In 1960, they moved to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, where Ruth bore their fifth child. Three years later, the entire family was received into the Catholic Church. In 1969, the family moved to San Diego, California, where Ray was professor of religious studies at the University of San Diego. After her children were grown, Ruth became an officer in the Juvenile Division of the San Diego County Probation Department, serving as an advisor to the Family Court regarding disputed child custody cases.

Ray was ordained a Catholic priest in 1983 under the pastoral provision issued by Pope St. John Paul II, and in 1996 the couple retired to Steubenville, Ohio, where Ray served as a diocesan priest and taught part-time at Franciscan University of Steubenville. They lived there until each died, Ray in 2014 and Ruth on February 26, 2022.

Family and friends knew Ruth as a devoted wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother, and as a generous hostess and top-notch cook, a talent for which she gave credit to her father, a professional chef. Throughout her life she continued to exercise her skills in language and art; she painted, wrote poetry, and authored and illustrated The Downy White Feather, a book of children’s poems. A piano player in her youth, she took up the instrument again in her retirement years.

Ruth is survived by her sister Doris Watson; her children Risa, Erica, Christopher (Sandi), Timothy (Leslie), and Mark (Katherine); 22 grandchildren; and 18 great-grandchildren. She will be laid to rest beside her beloved Ray in Mount Calvary Cemetery in Steubenville.

Her Funeral Mass will be at St. Peter Church, 425 N. Fourth Street, Steubenville, OH 43952, on Saturday, March 5, at 11:30 AM. It will be preceded by the viewing at St. Peter starting at 9:30 AM. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Ruth’s honor to The Friendship Room (a charitable organization serving the immediate needs of the lost and forgotten people of the Ohio Valley), P.O. Box 53, Steubenville, OH 43952, or AIM Women’s Center (a charitable organization providing life-affirming pregnancy services), P.O. Box 4365, Steubenville, OH 43952.

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March 5, 2022

9:30 AM to 11:30 AM
St. Peter Catholic Church ( Steubenville)

Funeral Mass
March 5, 2022

11:30 AM
St. Peter Catholic Church ( Steubenville)

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