September 19, 2017

Ruth Adelaide (Hackett) Sorensen

Sorensen, RuthRuth Adelaide (Hackett) Sorensen passed away peacefully on Sunday, September 17, 2017 at the age of 95.  She was born March 27, 1922 in Bloomfield, NE to Chester Arthur and Nola Belle (Walker) Hackett.

Survivors include her daughters and families:  Kay N. (Lyle) Ashelford and JoAnn (Dann) Miller.  Ruth had 4 grandchildren and 4 great grandchildren.  Ruth was preceded in death by her husband, Norman Trules, and son Lorenz Dee.  She was a devoted mother and wife.

During WWII, she worked at the Glen L. Martin Aircraft plant in Omaha.  She was a member of the team who built the Enola Gay bomber.

Ruth’s life work from 1951-1989 was dedicated to the advancement of developmental disabled individuals.  In the early 1950’s she and other volunteer parents created the Opportunity Center in Norfolk, Nebraska.  This was a school for mentally challenged children.  Her continued effort led to her position as Executive Director of Region IV services, retiring in 1989.  Under her leadership a workshop and multiple group homes were created to serve adults and children.

She served in various offices on a variety of local, state and national organizations and committees concerned with legislation, public relations, fund raising and the enhancement of the public perception of the developmentally disabled population.

Ruth received recognition and awards throughout her career.  She offered hope, support and friendship to many families.  Her legacy will live on for years.

A memorial service will be held at 10:30 am on Saturday, September 23, 2017 at the First United Methodist Church, on Phillip Ave. in Norfolk Nebraska.




  1. Ruth was my friend at Savannah Pines when I was the Program Coordinator and I found her, again, when I sang at Bickford. I was very fond of her. May she Rest In Peace. My condolences to her family.
    Anne Bremer

  2. My thoughts and prayers are with all of you. I appreciate you letting me know of Ruth’s passing. Ruth was a very special lady and enjoyed getting to know her when she lived at Savannah Pines. Blessings and cherish your memories of Ruth.

  3. I was very fond of Ruth. I met her through The Friendship Home, a Domestic Violence shelter for women & their children. She was a donor, I was on their Board. I offered her a ride to a donor dinner, she accepted and thereafter struck up a friendship. I used to take her to various medical appts., so she wouldn’t have to ride the shuttle from Savannah Pines. She was appreciative. We did fun things,too, like shop Merle Norman cosmetics, bedding plants, pumpkins, grocery, drug store. I used to visit her for coffee just to chat. We got to know a lot about each other. We moved from Lincoln 4 yrs. ago. We lost touch, but I admired & loved her. I am grieving her loss.

  4. Ruth was an inspiration to me. She was a dedicated wife, loving mother, effective advocate, a business leader, and a kind person. It was a honor to know her and her fabulous family. Her daughter, Jo, was my best friend in high school. My deepest sympathy to her family and friends.

  5. JoAnn,
    Jim and I send our condolences. We are so sorry we’re not going to be able to attend your mom’s funeral. She was a wonderful lady and did great things for Norfolk! We would have loved to get to see you.
    Jim and Kris Scheer


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