Obituary of Ruth Pate

Ruth I. Pate, 90, of rural Iowa City, died Tuesday, October 17, 2017, at Mercy Hospital under the loving care of Hospice.

Memorial services will be held at 11 am Friday, October 20, 2017, at Gay & Ciha Funeral and Cremation Service in Iowa City, where there will be a time of visitation from 9 am Friday until services.  Private family services and burial will take place at the Welsh Cemetery near the family farm in rural Johnson County.  In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made in her memory to Johnson County 4-H or Iowa City Hospice. To share a memory, thought, or condolence with her family please go to the funeral home website at

Ruth Irene Katzenmeyer was born January 29, 1927, in Iowa City, the daughter of Cyril and Mabel (Stover) Katzenmeyer.  She attended Iowa City Schools graduating from City High School with the Class of 1945.  Following high school she worked at the University of Iowa Library before her marriage to Richard A. Pate on May 7, 1947 at the Little Brown Church in Nashua, IA.  The couple farmed the Pate Century Farm south of Iowa City where Ruth still lived at the time of her death.  In addition to being a “farmwife”, she also worked for 18 years at Hills Elementary School as the media secretary. 

One of Ruth’s greatest joys was cooking and sharing with others.  Anyone who came into her home, whether it be family, friend or workman, was welcomed with something special she made.  At the very least, they most always left with a bag of her homemade cookies.

Because of her skills in the kitchen, she won many awards at the local and state fairs.  Ruth served as a Johnson County 4-H Leader and helped at the 4-H fair bake sales throughout the years.  In 1973 she was selected to receive the 4-H Honorary Achievement Award.

Her family includes her two children, David Pate (Christine) of Iowa City; Janet Barber (Dale Schoen) of Overland Park, KS; grandchildren, Elizabeth Pate (Neil) Wachal) of Iowa City; Chad Pate (Shanna) of Pinehurst, NC; and John Barber (Sarah) of Kansas City, MO; one great-granddaughter, Ella Pate; Ruth’s sister, Grace Katzenmeyer of Iowa City; and sister-in-law, Shirley Pate of Iowa City.  She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, brother, Tex Katzenmeyer, and brother-in-law, Robert Pate.