Vigen Memorial Home obituary – Ruth Elinor Heston, 94, Keokuk



Ruth Elinor Heston, 94 of Keokuk, IA passed away on Monday, June 20, 2022 at River Hills Village.

She was born on September 13, 1927 in Centerville, IA the daughter of Alfred O. and Amanda Gustafva Carlson Burkland.

The family moved to Keokuk in 1932.  She graduated from Keokuk High School with the class of 1945.

Ruth was united in marriage to Loren Gene Heston on November 4, 1948 in the First Christian Church in Roodhouse, IL.  They were united in marriage by Reverend W.W. Williams, uncle of the groom.  They were married for sixty-five years.

She had been employed by Northwestern Bell Telephone Company for fifteen years until Keokuk went dial.  She later worked at Keokuk Ferro Sil as a switchboard operator and receptionist for twenty-eight years, until her retirement in 1989.

Ruth was a lifelong member of First Lutheran Church and a member of the Naomi Circle.  She taught Sunday School and Confirmation classes for many years and also served as Altar Guild Directress for a number of years. 

Ruth Elinor is survived by her son, Mark Eugene Heston and loving daughter-in-law, Marie Ann of Keokuk.  Additional survivors include a grandson, Brandon Michael Heston and twin great-grandsons, Dayton Allen and Dakota James Heston.  She is also survived by a nephew, Bill Heston of Wheatland, MO and nieces, Lisa Bode and her husband, Darren of Keokuk, Linda Anderson and her husband, Rog of Greensboro, GA and Jan Stocks of Indio, CA.  Also surviving are special second cousins, John Anderson of Santa Fe, New Mexico, David Louis and Ilene Merrick of Brookside, CO, Mrs. Ray (Jackie) Hoy of Toledo, OH and her sister, Mrs. Geoff (Linda) Anderson of Hammond, IN and one brother, Rick (Becky) Burkland of Udell, IA.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Loren on November 1, 2013.  She was also preceded in death by her parents and numerous extended family members.

A funeral service will be held at 11:00 a.m., Monday at the Vigen Memorial Home in Keokuk, IA with Pastor Rodney Underwood officiating.  Burial will be in the Keokuk National Cemetery.

Visitation will be held prior to the service from 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m., Monday at the funeral home with family meeting with friends at that time.

In deepest gratitude, memorials may be given to First Lutheran Church or EveryStep Hospice of Mt. Pleasant, IA or River Hills Village.

Online condolences may be sent to the family at

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