Hope Widen Ryde

WINTER HAVEN, Fla. – Hope Widen Ryde, 95, passed away Feb. 21, 2014, in Winter Haven, Fla. Born on Halloween 1918, in Saskatchewan, Canada, to Rev. Henry F. and Esther Olsen Widen, she graduated high school in Minot, N.D. While working full time for the Great Northern Railroad in St. Paul, Minn., she attended both Bethel College and the Twin City Business School.

During this period she was an award winning equestrian, winning ribbons in both showing and jumping competitions.

On a visit to her parents in Glascow, Mo., she met Dr. Robert Emerson Ryde whom she married in 1946. They enjoyed hunting in the ‘big sky country’ but fell in love with the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and moved his medical practice to Escanaba. Hope was active in the First Presbyterian Church and its choir, and in the fine arts community of Escanaba who relied on her green thumb and her enormous house plants to fill their stage. She was an accomplished potter and artist and was recognized repeatedly for her fine needlework and clothing design. Hope was also passionately involved with every aspect of the restoration of their historic home at 750 Lake Shore Drive where she could often be found up on a ladder alongside the painters. It was a home where the door was always open and friends of all ages gathered around the kitchen table near a glowing fireplace that she designed.

Widowed in 1984 she relocated to Seattle to be near sisters Grace Valine, Dorothy Button, and their families. The beauty of the Pacific Northwest delighted her but she moved to Florida to be near her son William John Ryde and his wife Deborah. She quickly established herself in the needlework community and became a sought after mentor of stitchery friends in Kissimmee.

Hope was preceded in death by her late husband, Robert Emerson Ryde, and her stepson, Robert Lewis Ryde.

She is survived by her sisters; her sons, William Ryde and wife, Deborah of Lake Alfred, Fla., James Ryde and wife Dianna of Nicholasville, Ky.; daughter, Lynn Moosman and partner Nancy Crutcher of Libertyville, Ill.; grandchildren, David Moosman of Denver, Colo., Lauren Moosman of Marquette, Benjamin Ryde of St Paul, Minn., and John Thomas Ryde and their families; and beloved nieces and nephews.

Hope lived her long and rewarding life with amazing grace. Based on her specific request, a memorial gathering for friends and family will be held this summer in Escanaba.

Her family requests that any contributions in her name be made to a charitable organization of your choice.