Ellen Louise Gruben

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August 1, 1936 - January 29, 2018

Ellen Louise Gruben, 81, passed away Monday, January 29, 2018, after a lengthy illness. She was born to a Shepherd and is now in the arms of her Heavenly Shepherd. Ellen was born on August 1, 1936, to James Hedrick and Mary Ursula McShan Shelburne in the Bethel community near Ballinger, Texas. She attended a threeroom school house in Bethel, where her Aunt Leora Richardson was her teacher from third to sixth grade. When she started the eighth grade, Bethel consolidated with Ballinger schools. At Ballinger High School, Ellen was a twirler and played basketball and volleyball. She was voted Senior Class Secretary and Best All Around, graduating in 1954. She then began Shannon School of Nursing in San Angelo, Texas and graduated from there with her Associates Degree in Nursing in 1957. Ellen earned her Registered Nurse’s license and went on to work at Shannon Hospital in San Angelo and Cogdell Memorial Hospital in Snyder, Texas. She served as Assistant Director of Nurses at Cogdell until her retirement when she married Bobby Reent Gruben on January 19, 1962. Although she retired at 25 years old from professional nursing, she maintained her Registered Nurse’s license until her death. Her Christian faith, her family, and service to others were at the heart of everything that was important to her. She was a long-time member of Cross Roads Baptist Church where she was actively involved in all aspects of church life from teaching children and youth in Sunday School and Girls in Action, playing the piano for worship and Sunday School, leading the Women’s Missionary Union, being a camp counselor, and participating in mission trips locally as well as volunteering in Mexico, Alaska, and South Dakota. In her weakened state, she still continued to minister as a fervent prayer warrior with an extensive prayer list. She also remained as a supportive listener and encourager to all who knew her. Ellen was involved in her community as member of the Calendar Club charity organization which raised funds for the West Texas Rehabilitation Center through its annual community talent show, the Daughter’s of the American Revolution organization, as a 4-H leader, and a school Room Mother for her children’s classes. Although she never was employed as nurse after her marriage, she often used her training to care for her many friends and family members who were needing nursing assistance. Ellen loved hosting family get-togethers and having her home brimming with loved ones. She was proceeded in death by her parents, her brother Billy Hedrick Shelburne, and her grandson Nathan McShan Dodson. She is survived by her husband of 56 years, Bobby Gruben; her children, Laura (Jon) Dodson of LaGrange, GA, Tony (Elizabeth) Gruben of Uvalde, TX, and Todd (Darla) Gruben of Cedar Park, TX; and her grandchildren Clay Dodson, Louise Dodson, Kate Gruben, Emma Gruben, Claire Gruben, and Hope Gruben. Pallbearers are Juan Armenta, Randy Atkins, Donnie Gruben, Jim Gruben, Maury Gruben, Byron Kennedy, Norvelle Kennedy, Frankie Klepper, and Klay McWilliams. Visitation will be held on Thursday, February 1, 2018 from 6-8 PM at Weathersbee-Ray Funeral Home in Rotan, Texas and a Celebration of Life will be Friday, February 2, 2018 at 2 PM at First Baptist Church in Rotan. Special recognition to Ellen’s selfless caregivers Anna Barrera, Stacy Jimenez, Marcy Rivas, Linda Medellin, Donna Kennedy, Annette Atkins, Klay McWilliams and the entire Compass Hospice Staff for the kindness, compassion and care that was extended to her during her difficult illness. Contributions can be made to Cross Roads Baptist Church, Rotan, TX; Baptist Temple Church Uvalde, TX; or the Ronald McDonald House at Children Healthcare of Atlanta, GA.

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