WOOSTER – Elisabeth ?Libby? Swiler Bruch passed away on Saturday, February 6, 2010. She was born in Cleveland, Ohio, June 16, 1926 to E. Russell Swiler and Mary Paxton Swiler.
Libby graduated from Shaker Heights High School in 1944 and from Denison University in 1948 where she was a member of Kappa Alpha Theta. On February 4, 1950, Libby and Thomas O. Bruch were married at Plymouth Church in Shaker Heights. They shared 60 years of marriage.
Libby is survived by her husband Tom and their four children: Deborah (Mark) Robinson, Ginna (Dana) Phillips, Toby (Joanie) Bruch, and Rusty (Cora) Bruch, all of Wooster. Grandchildren are Christopher (Crystal) and Dallas Robinson; Kyle (Mike) Guadagno: Tommy Bruch; Megan (Wes) Wright; and Claire, Joe, and Meredith Bruch; and great-grandchildren Evan Guadagno and Halle Wright. A brother, Tom R. Swiler, also survives as well as a host of nieces, nephews and friends.
In 1957 the Bruch family moved to a Wayne County dairy farm. Soon after, the family joined First Presbyterian Church where Libby served as an elder, a deacon, and on many committees including nursery care, the organ committee, and Alternative Christmas. In 1975 Libby Bruch established Quailcrest Farm. Here she shared her love and ever-increasing knowledge of herbs, flowers, and all things beautiful with hundreds, then thousands of customers who became her friends.
Libby always had time for family and friends. During her life in the Wooster area Libby was active in Welcome Wagon, Wayne Elementary PTA, Gnat Boxers, and Junior Women?s League. She was active in AAUW with the book sale and picture ladies. She was a charter member of PEO Chapter DF and a founding member of the Wayne County Herb Society. The College of Wooster Women?s Advisory Board and both Secrest and Holden Arboretums were among the beneficiaries of her love and caring. She was also passionate about preserving park lands and was a co-founder of the Wayne County Park District. Most recently Libby gave of herself to Habitat for Humanity as a volunteer as well as serving on its board.
Throughout her life Libby received honors and recognition from family and friends. One which was most meaningful to her was the Nancy Putnam Howard Award for Excellence in Horticulture given in June 1999 during the annual meeting and educational conference of the Herb Society of America of which she was a member.
Twenty five years ago and continuing annually, Libby organized and co-hosted the Quailcrest Garden Symposium at the Inn at Honey Run. With her family, she designed and built gardens at the original Cleveland Home and Garden Show and Cleveland Botanical Garden?s Floralscape at Public Hall.
No matter what she was doing, no matter where she was, Libby had compassion for all people. This was instilled in her by her parents, and in all she has done Libby has always ?paid it forward?.
Her family and her home, followed closely by her gardens and all of Quailcrest Farm, were Libby?s first loves. Yet her life encompassed so much more. Whether it be cheering for Scots? basketball – walking in the woods-reading and discussing books – cooking for two or for 50-dogs and dog walks-writing short notes and long letters,-traveling- Easter brunch in the woods, Libby lived and loved life to the fullest. Her door and her heart were always open as she delighted in sharing her passions. And there was always another garden to be weeded.
Services will be at Wooster?s First Presbyterian Church on Tuesday February 16 at 2 PM followed by a reception in Bruch Hall where the family will greet friends.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to First Presbyterian Church?s Endowment Fund, 621 College Avenue, Wooster, or to Habitat for Humanity, 1451 Spruce Street, Wooster
McIntire, Davis & Greene Funeral Home, 216 E. Larwill St., Wooster is assisting the family with arrangements.
First Presbyterian Church Endowment Fund, 621 College Avenue, Wooster, OH 44691 or Habitat for Humanity, 1451 Spruce St., Wooster, OH 44691
Memorial Service, Tuesday, February 16, 2010 at 2:00 P.M. at the First Presbyterian Church
Family will receive friends following the service at the church