Ruth L. Lay-Erntson
1910 - 1979
Ruth Erntson, a pianist and singer, taught music and English and served as librarian at Laurelwood and Portland Adventist academies in the 1930s and 1940s. She then taught privately in her home and in the public school system in Albany, Oregon.
Ruth was born in Kulm, North Dakota, one of eight children of Christina Mauch and Jacob Lay, both of whom had emigrated from Russia in 1886 and then married in 1892. By the time of the 1920 census, they were residing in College Place, Washington, where Ruth was attending elementary school. She later attended Walla Walla College, now University, where she pursued a diploma in music, studying voice under Lon Metcalfe and piano under Frances Wheeler.
By the time she was hired to teach at Laurelwood Academy in the fall of 1931, following graduation from WWC with a conservatory diploma in piano the previous spring, she had married Verland Volna Erntson. They would have two children, Verland and Beverly. Ruth was living in Oregon at the time of her death at age 69.
Sources: North Pacific Union Gleaner, 15 October 1979, 24 (obituary), 30 October 1945 (father's obituary); 1930s The Laurel, Laurelwood Academy yearbooks; 1920 and 1930 census records; Dan Shultz, A Great Tradition, Music at Walla Walla College, 1892-1992, 244 (Listing of graduates); Social Security records.