Essex of Salem II resident, Ruth Ward, celebrates 105th birthday

Ruth Ward recently celebrated her 105th birthday with her friends at Essex of Salem II. Mrs. Ward was born Feb. 26, 1908. She served as the valedictorian of her class at East Palestine High School. Mrs. Ward was a member of the East Palestine Presbyterian Church where she taught Bible class for over 60 years, was the church secretary for 17 years and was noted as “church historian.” She wrote plays, belonged to book clubs and associated with Greek sororities. She loved to walk and kept active most of her life. She was married to William E. Ward, a very prominent teacher who coached track at East Palestine High School from 1926 through 1969 and cross country from 1937 through 1968. Mr. Ward, who is in the Ohio Association of Track and Cross Country Coaches Hall of Fame, founded the Ward Relays, which developed into the William E. Ward Invitational that is held in East Palestine each year. Shown celebrating with Mrs. Ward is Terry Achberger, Kaiileigh Olmstead, Jean Mercure and Hope Jarrett. (Submitted photo)