The Finnegans Are Honored
RUTHVEN – Bob and Ellie Finnegan were definitely surprised when members of the Lost Island-Ruthven Betterment Association (LIRBA) arrived at their door with a bouquet of balloons. The group brought the news that Bob and Ellie were the “2012 Lost Island-Ruthven Citizens of the Year.”
“We didn’t know what they were there for,” said Bob. “They brought congratulations and balloons. We sure were surprised. And then Deanna brought a gift from the Care Center, too.”
The Finnegans were presented with a plaque Friday evening when events kicked off for the weekend. They participated in all of the Bully Bullhead activities and headed up the parade.
The nomination letter for Bob and Ellie was read at the Friday evening ceremony: Bob and Ellie have been residents of Ruthven all their lives. They raised seven children, all graduating from the Ruthven schools. Bob has volunteered in many community activities. He is a Veteran and belongs to the American Legion. He was in the Ruthven bank for many years and sold insurance and real estate. Bob was involved for many years keeping the scorebook for the basketball teams. He has been active in many of the town’s fundraisers and supporter of city projects.
Ellis has participated in all church activities at Sacred Heart Church, much of the time as a leader. She has been on the church board, held all the offices in Ladies Guild, played the organ, sang with the choir, served on the cemetery committee, and helped with many chicken dinners. She is active in the American Legion Auxiliary and Women’s Club. She has, and is, serving on the board of the Ruthven Care Center.
They have both probably helped with many other civic duties of which we are unaware. There were at least ten Finnegans who grew up in Ruthven; and a few Thompsons, Ellie’s maiden name so we think it is time that one couple from these families be honored as “Citizen of the Year 2012”.
The Finnegan family includes: Katie and Jim Brown from Oto, Casey, Kyle, Alex and Darren; Kim and Valarie Finnegan from Sullivan, MO, Kimberly, Zach, Mike and Kelly; Mary and Dr. Charles Kubasko from Raleigh, NC, Christin and Braxton; Terry and Debbie Finnegan from Pekin, IL, Isaac and Hannah; Angie and Jeff Noecker from St. Cloud, MN, Curtis, Morgan, Austin, Hollie and Holden; Jenny Spence from Columbia, MO, Payton and Shea; Mollie and Phil Bender from Irvine, CA, Rhett and Reggie.
Katie, Mary, Terry and Jenny and families were able to be home in Ruthven to help their parents celebrate over the weekend.
Bob and Ellie continue to be active in the community. Bob says he is semi retired. He does a little gardening, hauling his produce to the farmers market.
They were pleased with the honor of being named “Citizens of the Year” and enjoy participating in the activities and events of the weekend.
“This (Bully Bullhead Weekend) goes over pretty good,” said Bob.