Flags at half-staff in memory of former TCU employee

Flags at half-staff in memory of former TCU employee

TCU will fly its flags at half-staff on Monday in remembrance of former university employee Ruth Ellen Siegfried Wassenich. Wassenich, 97, died Sunday, Sept. 9, 2012 in Fort Worth.

Wassenich became the chief catalog librarian at TCU in 1957, when she and her husband, Paul Wassenich, moved to Fort Worth. Paul, who was a TCU alumnus, also got a job at TCU that year as an undergraduate religion professor.

Mrs. Wassenich retired in 1977 and began a new hobby, growing peaches. Library Specialist Delories McGhee said Wassenich would come once a year to bring the library staff ripe peaches.

“Everyone would look forward to it,” McGhee said.

Wassenich was born in Cleveland, Ohio on Feb. 26, 1915. Mrs. Wassenich married Paul Wassenich on June 16, 1938, according to her obituary in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

She graduated from Oberlin College and also received a degree from the University of Chicago Theological Seminary. Wassenich later studied library science at the University of Texas at Austin.

Former librarian and co-worker of Wassenich Joann Karges described her as a compassionate, God-loving woman who was always looking out for others.

Paul Wassenich was the founder and first director of the TCU Honors Program. The Wassenich Award, the Paul Wassenich Founders Medal and the Paul and Ruth Wassenich Disciples Scholarship can all be attributed to the Wassenich family.

Wassenich was predeceased by her parents, Alice Dixon Siegfried and Simeon E. Siegfried; and her husband of 66 years, Paul Wassenich. Survivors include son, Mark and wife, Linda, of Dallas; son, Thomas and wife, Dianne, of San Marcos; son, James "Red" and wife, Karen Pavelka, of Austin; and two grandsons.

The funeral was held Saturday, Sept. 15 at Trinity Terrace.