Ruth Jane Armstrong Lambert, a beloved wife, mother, grandmother, and friend, passed away on March 30, 2023, at the age of 90. She was known to her friends as Ruth, her cousins and Ephraim folk as Ruth Jane, and lovingly referred to as Mom and Grandma by her children and grandchildren. She lived a full and happy life that she greatly loved.
Born to Roger Chauncy Armstrong (RC) and Phyllis Rasmuson on January 29, 1933, in Ephraim, UT, Ruth learned to love the quiet town of Ephraim, running up and down the streets with friends, schoolmates and her best friend and older sister Mitzi. She attended Snow College and later Utah State and BYU, and graduated with a degree in Elementary Education.
On a blind date, Ruth met Calvin Arnold Lambert, who she would marry soon after in the Salt Lake City LDS Temple on June 15, 1958. They were a devoted pair who raised their four sons and one daughter on the foundation of Jesus Christ and His gospel. Although Mom loved being a schoolteacher, she was dedicated to being a wife and homemaker. She was a wonderful mom who loved her husband and children unconditionally and with great patience.
Mom and Dad gave their children a great life that was full of experiences and traveled the world together – a gift that they shared with many others throughout the years through Cal’s travel business. Mom always looked forward to her and Dad’s annual trips to Hawaii. She loved all the many summer family trips over the years, including San Diego, Jackson Hole, Bear Lake, and Jeremy Ranch but San Diego was her favorite.
Mom absolutely loved getting her hair done every week and treasured her weekly trips with Mitzi and her niece, Sharon, which often included trips to Wendy's and the dollar movie theater. She always cherished time spent in-person and over the phone with her sweet sisters, Mitzi, Louise, and Jean, and her brother, Fred.
She hosted numerous family gatherings which were always planned with great care and close attention to the details. Everyone looked forward to her famous lemon bars, chicken stuffing casserole, raspberry jam and her slush she served on special occasions. Mom and Dad gave all of their family treatment worthy of fine hotels, but Mom was known most for her genuine care and interest in each of her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, extended family members, and even neighbors. She was an expert at remembering the details of everyone’s life and what was important to each of them.
Mom also showed her love and dedication to family during the final years of her mother Phyllis’ life, which required daily care and support from Ruth and her sister Mitzi for many years. Mom always made sure Phyllis had company, an ice cream bar, and a fresh squeezed orange juice.
We are extra grateful for the sweet way she cared for and ministered to Dad for the last six years of his life, which required learning to care for the business and management of their home on her own – not an easy task for an 80-year-old, but one she did with grace and without complaint. Mom took care of and cherished every day she had with Dad.
As her own health declined over the last several years, Mom was not able to do all the cooking, cleaning, and preparation she desired, but never lost her love and interest in the individual relationships she had with so many. Family and friends were still always welcome in her home. Mom was always supportive to all of us individually and rarely spoke about herself. Big gatherings became difficult for Mom but she made them happen because she knew her family loved being together. Mom cherished small personal visits and phone calls, which became her favorite thing in recent years. She became our connection to all news and activity throughout the family and old neighborhood. Mom would often say, “Not much news but some say no news is good news.” Some of her other favorite phrases included “Do something for yourself”, “By the inch it’s a cinch but by the yard it’s hard” and “I’m not getting older, I’m getting better!”
In recent years, Mom became a passionate fan of the Utah Jazz
Do something for yourself and rarely missed watching a game. Mom regularly wore her Jazz shirt, knew the roster inside and out, and was extra excited and vocal while watching the team – especially when they struggled. Watching games on TV with Mom was a blast, and you could always count on Cinnamon Bears, M&M’s, chocolate licorice, gummy bears, or Reese’s, and after the game, a healthy dish of ice cream.
Ruth is preceded in death by her parents Roger and Phyllis Armstrong, sisters Mitzi Osborne and Louise Bryner, her husband Cal and son-in law Rick Clark. She is the last Lambert in the line of Thomas and Pearl Lambert to pass away, but she hopes the next generation of her family will continue the legacy and example that her and Dad set for each of us.
Ruth is survived by her children: David Lambert (Joy), Rich Lambert (Sandy), Greg Lambert (Julie), Julie Clark, and Steven Lambert (Heather), brother Fred Armstrong (Laura), sister Jean Campbell, 21 grandchildren, and 10 great-grandchildren. Although she has left this earth, she will not be forgotten.
As Ruth’s family, we are incredibly grateful for everyone who made her life so fulfilling and did so much for her in recent years. Sincere thanks to the staff at Petersen Farms Assisted Living in South Weber, UT, for their empathetic and genuine care over the last several months. Big thanks go out to Clair and Julia Hopkins for all of their kindnesses and generous friendship they extended to Mom. The family also shares our deepest gratitude to Ned and Alene Mangelson, who were Mom and Dad’s neighbors for close to 50 years. Ned and Alene were the best neighbors on earth, especially when Mom was alone. There are no words that express the gratitude we have for those mentioned here and ALL of the wonderful people who provided such Christ-like love so freely.
Funeral services will be held Saturday April 15, 2023, at 11:00 a.m. in the Monument Park Stake Center church building located at 1320 South Wasatch Drive in Salt Lake City, UT. There will also be a visitation for friends and family from 9:30 - 10:30 a.m. preceding the funeral services.