Iris Ruth Osborne

Iris Ruth Osborne, 87, of Mayflower passed away Wednesday, Dec. 15, 2010. Ruth was born July 26, 1923, in Garner, Ark., to Annette "Nettie" and Isaac Thomas Osborne, she was one of six children. She was a graduate of DeValls Bluff High School, DeValls Bluff, Ark, Arkansas Baptist School of Nursing, Little Rock and the University of Central Arkansas, Conway.

 Her nursing career began at Baptist Medical Center, and she later retired from the Veterans Administration Hospital in Little Rock.

Ruth touched the lives of many through her 33 year career as a licensed practical nurse and a registered nurse and equally as an active and devoted member of Mayflower United Methodist Church at Mayflower, where at age 87, Ruth was still teaching Sunday school and leading the United Methodist Women. Ruth had a knack for getting things done. Being resourceful was a way of life she learned while going up. 

She brought that talent to her nursing career when serving on the Veteran’s Occupational Research committee, rehabilitating veterans returning home from the war. She loved watching a good football game with friends, sharing time with her family and extended family, cooking, traveling, fishing, and cross word puzzles. 

Ruth was preceded in death by her parents and stepfather, John Mertens; seven brothers, James Taylor Osborne, Thomas Leo Osborne, and Charles Wayne Osborne, Cecil Mertens, Marcellis Mertens, James Vernon Mertens, and J.W. (Jake) Mertens; two sisters, Mary Ann Osborne Costello and Vannoy Mertens Dodson.

She is survived by one sister, Irma Osborne Duch of Stuttgart; sister-in-laws Virginia Mertens of Modesto, Calif., and Helen Osborne of Charleston, S.C.; and a host of other relatives and friends who have been very supportive.

Visitation will be from 6-8 p.m. today at Griffin Leggett Funeral Home. The funeral will be 2 p.m. Saturday at Mayflower United Methodist Church, officiated by the Rev. Rick Wilkins. Burial will be in Lebanon Cemetery, near McRae. Memorials may be made to Mayflower UMC, P.O. Box 638, Highway 89 North, Mayflower, Ark., 72106, (501) 470-0983.

Arrangements by Griffin Leggett Funeral Home, 1751 Dave Ward Dr., Conway, Ark., 72034, 501-327-5000. 

Online guest registry is available at