Barbara Ann (Eluere) Ruppel | Lawrenceville Daily Record
Lawrenceville Daily Record

Barbara Ann (Eluere) Ruppel

Posted on October 31, 2022

Updated on November 1, 2022


Lawrenceville, Sep. 19, 1934 - Ill. — Oct. 28, 2022Barbara Ann (Eluere) Ruppel passed away October 28, 2022, at Good Samaritan Hospital in Vincennes, Indiana. She was born September 19, 1934, to Edward Anthony and Frances Ellen (Cannon) Eluere of Vincennes.

Barbara married her first love, Edward George Ruppel, on November 29, 1952, in the Old Cathedral of Vincennes. Already loving Ed's family, she was delighted to become a Ruppel. They made their lives together for nearly fifty-seven years prior to the death of Ed in 2009, raising eight children and working side by side in the family business, Ruppel TV and Appliance. She and Ed had relocated to Lawrenceville, Illinois, in 1956 after having traveled to Georgia and Colorado for Ed's army duty during the Korean War. They loved their small-town community and neighbors and were very content to live in the same home for the rest of their lives.

Ed and Barbara's eight children are: John (deceased) and wife Joanie, Keller, Texas; Theresa and Chuck Shelby, Lafayette, Indiana; Mark and Stephanie Ruppel, Lawrenceville, Illinois; Francis and Eileen Ruppel, Knoxville, Tennessee; Daniel Ruppel, Lawrenceville, Illinois; Christopher and Seemein Ruppel, Carmel, Indiana; Mary Jane and Michael Zuzolo, Atchison, Kansas; and Jo Ellen and Keith Obermeyer, Jasper, Indiana.

Their twenty-one grandchildren are: Christopher (Karin) Ruppel, Elizabeth (David) Hall, Katie Ruppel (John Stanwood), Nicholas Ruppel, Zoe Ruppel, Doug (Kate) Shelby, Bryan (Mary Anne) Shelby, Christie (Drew) Smedley, Rachel Ruppel, Aaron Ruppel, Emily Ruppel, Kyle (Leslie) Ruppel, Frances (Zachary) Myslinski, Thomas Zuzolo (fiancée Lizzy Putbrese), Joseph Zuzolo, Peter Zuzolo, Anthony Zuzolo, Eric (Courtney Jo) Obermeyer, Courtney Obermeyer (fiancé Jarrod Davis), Vince (Diana) Obermeyer, and Josh Obermeyer. They also had sixteen great-grandchildren, and anticipating the arrival of the seventeenth.

Surviving brothers-and-sisters-in-law of Barbara are Deacon Earl and Judy Ruppel, Mary Ann Ruppel, Lois Ruppel, and Richard Ruppel. In addition, there are numerous nieces and nephews whom she also dearly loved.

Barbara was preceded in death by her husband Edward in 2009 and son, John, in 2010, her mother in 1968, and her father in 1990, as well as brothers Edward John Eluere in 2012 and Joseph Eluere in 1963, a great-grandson Damien, and several brothers-and-sisters-in-law and nieces and nephews. She also had several godchildren.

Barbara was tirelessly devoted to faith, family, and friends. She had strong family ties to the Old Cathedral, her great-grandfather even having been commissioned to come from France to assist in its construction; she was a member there for twenty-six years. Additionally, she was a member of Saint Lawrence for sixty-two years, where she had been a council and committee member, Eucharistic minister, and lector. She taught high school students in the parish school of religion from 1972-90, was on the RCIA teaching team from 1991-2001, and led a faith renew group from 2001-2009. She worked to help fundraise for various needs of the parish school for years. Barbara felt a joyful obligation to her faith community as well as the community-at-large.

Barbara relished spending time with her immediate and extended family and various groups of devoted friends. She traveled border to border and coast to coast with Ed, always incorporating visits along the way with those they loved. She wrote extensive stories to help pass on the family heritage, and she had a decided sense of duty and honor toward her relation.

Barbara read the Bible daily and studied Scripture extensively. She received an excellent education at Saint Rose Academy and was well-read, being especially well-versed in the Classics. She possessed a singular capacity for memorization, having the uncanny ability to recite verbatim, on command, long poems from authors like James Whitcomb Riley and Edgar Allen Poe, which she had not revisited in decades. She was also an engaging writer. She liked playing cards and working crossword puzzles. She enjoyed sewing for family, especially patch-work quilting, and had in earlier years painted and done calligraphy. For years, she and Ed kept a very large garden and maintained together several rental properties. She still worked at the family business until just weeks prior to her death. She was never idle and was happiest when helping others.

Beloved by all who knew her, Barbara was forever an optimist and had a fantastic sense of humor; both qualities were implicit in her ready laugh and broad smile. One of her favorite books in her days of raising a family was Erma Bombeck's The Grass Is Always Greener Over the Septic Tank. When asked how she could divide her love among so many children, she would reply that the love was not divided, only multiplied, with each addition. When she lost her eldest son so soon after her husband, she said she was determined to never ask, "Why me?" but rather, "Why not me?" Hers was an underlying joy and calm in all situations. Certainly, it could be said of Barbara that "she fought the good fight, she finished the course, she kept the faith" (2 Tim 4:7). She left the world a better place than she found it—and will be sorely missed.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be conducted on Thursday, November 3, 2022 at 10:00am CDT at the Saint Lawrence Catholic Church in Lawrenceville, Illinois. Visitation will be Wednesday from 4:00 until 7:00pm CDT at the Emmons-Macey & Steffey Funeral Home in Lawrenceville, Illinois. Rosary will begin at 4:00pm. Burial will be at the Lawrenceville City Cemetery in Lawrenceville, Illinois. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be given to the Saint Lawrence Catholic Church.

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