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Ruth Robinson McGrath

Ruth Robinson McGrath, 78, of Colonial Drive, Ipswich, died Monday, May 12, 2014 at her home in Ipswich following a long illness.

She was born in Washington, D.C., August 16, 1935, daughter of the late Allen and Ruth (Sweeney) Robinson.  She graduated from Stone Ridge Country Day School, in Bethesda, MD, and from Trinity College, in Washington, D.C.  After college, she worked as an analyst at the National Security Agency in Washington and then for four years as a wage and salary administrator executive at Remington Rand in New York City.  She moved to Dorset, VT, in 1971 where she practiced real estate and was active in town affairs.  She chaired the Dorset School Board, was a tax assessor, served on the town planning commission, and co-chaired the junior ski program.  She was a real estate broker for nine years with Real Estate Associates of Vermont, based in Manchester, and served as secretary for the Southwestern Vermont Board of Realtors.  After moving back to Washington, D.C., she worked as a broker for Stuart & Maury Realtors Inc. in Bethesda, MD, from 1984 to 1992.  Subsequently, she worked as a marketing manager for LeadMasters, while living in Rowayton, CT.  In 2007, she moved to Ipswich to be near her children and beloved grandchildren.

A woman of many talents, she held careers in business and real estate, while volunteering on local boards and raising three children.  No one was better at knitting an ornate sweater or mastering tricky cross stitch projects.  She was an accomplished seamstress throughout her life, inspiring awe among friends and family as she turned out slipcovers, draperies and clothing of the highest quality and detail (including a wedding dress and a stylish wool coat).  An avid fan of the Times crossword puzzle, she became a meticulous genealogist later in life, traveling to Ireland, California, Pennsylvania, and upstate New York in pursuit of her ancestral past.

She is survived by three children, Susan (McGrath) Brengle and her husband Andrew of Ipswich,  John H. McGrath Jr., of Manchester, VT, and Brian A. McGrath, of Nantucket,  three grandchildren, Robert, Emily, and Miles Brengle, all of Ipswich, two nephews by marriage, William Gaynor, Jr., of Shelton, CT and David Gaynor of Stratham, NH; and a niece by marriage, Mary Jane (Gaynor) Carrozzella, of Wallingford, CT.  She was married to the late John Hill McGrath of Shelton, CT.

Her funeral service will be held 9 am Friday, May 16 from the Whittier-Porter Funeral Home, 6 High Street, Ipswich ,followed by the celebration of a Funeral Mass of Christian Burial  10 am in Our Lady of Hope  Church, Linebrook Road, Ipswich. Family and friends  are respectfully welcomed. Visiting hours are Thursday 4 to 7 pm. Interment will be in the New Highland Cemetery, Ipswich. Memorial contributions in her name may be made to Ipswich Humane Group, P.O. Box 873, Ipswich, MA 01938.

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