Ruth Caswell Obituary

Ruth M. Caswell Obituary 


Ruth Moffett Hansen Caswell; educator, philatelist, musician.  

Dearly beloved wife, mother and grandmother passed away at home, August 2023 at the age of 88. 

She believed that music enhanced our lives and was involved in live concerts, as both a performer and as an attendee. In retirement, Ruth found a love of handbells, and rang in several ensembles, as well as solos and duets under the guidance of Mark Andersen.  She directed two ensembles, International Artists Carillon and the Anderson Island Ringers.  

For the American Guild of Organists, she created, developed, and implemented Pipe Works, a program in which a small organ on wheels was taken for residencies in elementary schools.  Teachers and volunteers taught music, science, and social studies around the instrument.  She was a member of Ladies Musical Club of Seattle and served on the board as treasurer.  She was a freelance organist. 

Her husband, Lyman, introduced her to philately and they were both involved in the hobby.  An interest in exhibiting took them to different parts of the country and interactions with many interesting people.  Ruth, along with two other women, founded Women Exhibitors which she chaired for several years, and at the time of her death was a board member at large. 

Ruth, along with three men founded SEAPEX, a national exhibition in the Seattle area.  Ruth served as president for the first few years, and remained on the board for several years.  Ruth and Lyman were both named as “Northwest Philatelists of the Year” for 2013 by the Northwest Federation of Stamp Clubs for their Philatelic contributions.  Ruth was honored with the SEAPEX Distinguished Service Award in 2018.  

Ruth’s profession was education.  She taught in teacher education at Western Illinois University and was a Professor of Education at Texas Woman’s University (TWU).  It was at TWU that she met her husband, Lyman R. Caswell.  She started her educational ventures as a teacher’s assistant in Chehalis, taught at Evaline, a one room elementary grade school near Winlock, and at Winlock Elementary School.  She also taught at Centralia College in continuing education.  

Ruth completed her Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Music degree and a Masters of Education at the University of Puget Sound while she taught elementary school.  She achieved a PhD in Education at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1983. 

Ruth grew up in Indiana, attended Purdue University, and married Frank Hansen, who passed in 1999.  Prior to his death, shortly after marrying they relocated to the Pacific Northwest.  

Ruth was the daughter of Russell and Opal (Brown) Moffett.  She is survived by her children, Barbara Roewe and David Hansen (Carolyn); by her step-children, Amy Mills, Randy Caswell (Judy), and Timothy Caswell.  She is also survived by her grandchildren, Chris Roewe (Jennifer), Matt Roewe, Shawn Roewe (Kaitlyn), Emily Harrington (Colin), Josh Mills (Kristen), Jennifer Chittenden (Matt), and 12 great grandchildren.