By Bill Hancock, Runnels County Register:
Ballinger lost part of its heart and soul on April 4th, 2019, when Juan Carlos Ruiz suddenly passed away overnight. Ruiz, 37, was born on October 28th, 1981 in Eden, Texas to Oscar and Norma (Mata) Ruiz. In 2000 he graduated from Paint Rock High School and married his wife, Saranada Boone, on August 13th, 2005. Together the couple had 3 children, Isabel, Juan and Jacob. One of his favorite activities was walking through the garden with his wife with is favorite flowers being pansies and zinnias.
Ruiz was superintendent of Ballinger’s water department, where he had worked for 13 years, and was known for his strong work ethic. Ruiz was also a valued member of the Ballinger Volunteer Fire Department for 7 years and perhaps one his greatest contributions was his quick wit, the ability to tell a joke and lighten a mood quickly. Ruiz was known for his mild temperament but mostly as a father with a strong love of his family.
Ruiz was a long-time, devoted member of St. Mary Star of the Sea Catholic Church. He was on the church council as well as on the Knights of Columbus council. He was named “Knight of the Year” for the Ballinger Council in 2017. He and his family were also named “Family of the Year” in 2017. Ruiz was a highly respected little league baseball coach and involved in other aspects of Ballinger’s youth sports.
Robert Langston, a lieutenant with the Ballinger Volunteer Fire Department spoke fondly of Ruiz, “He was a lot of things before he was a fire fighter. If there was a call he was there, if there was someone in need he was there. The fire department was just one side of him. He was a Catholic, a leader with the city, spent countless hours with Ballinger youth sports, and not to forget, being a husband, father, brother, uncle, etc.”
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