Ruth Johnston Celebrates 100th Birthday
Friendly Valley woman to celebrate a century of living well.
Friendly Valley resident Ruth Johnston turns 100 years old on January 12 and will celebrate the occasion with a gathering in Friendly Valley on Sunday afternoon.
Born on a farm in Cook, Nebraska, she attended a one-room schoolhouse and was an avid dancer and did well in sports.
Her first job was working as a telephone operator for 10 cents an hour, which she did during her high school years. After college, she returned to the one-room schoolhouse as a teacher of grades one through eight.
In 1925, she met Lefty Tyree at a 10-cents-a-dance pavilion and they married three years later, ending Ruth’s teaching career (teachers were not allowed to be married on those days). In 1929, their daughter Arlene was born.
She and Lefty moved to Southern California in 1947 and they both worked for the North American Aircraft Company for 30 years, retiring in 1972. In 1964, they became one of the original owners of a home in Friendly Valley, where Ruth still resides today.
“We didn’t want a big yard to take care of,” Ruth told KHTS. “We wanted less work to do on the weekend so we could enjoy life.”
Lefty died in 1981 and in 1982, Ruth met and married Ray Johnston. The couple loved golf, ballroom dancing, square dancing, lawn bowling, little theater and traveling in their RV. Ruth served as president of the Friendly Valley Golf Club twice and as Social Chair and President of the RV Club and the Bowlettes. Ruth even scored a hole-in-one on at the Antelope Valley Country Club.
Ray passed away in 2001 and Arlene in 2002. Ruth still enjoys the company of her three grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. She attributes her longevity to a positive attitude, watching her nutrition and getting regular exercise. She loves living in Friendly Valley and says the community is full of caring people and activities that keep her busy. Ruth will share her secrets for a long and happy life on the KHTS Senior Hour on January 23.
*Special thanks to Arvilla Tripp who shared Ruth’s biography with us.