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Who Ruth Johnson; Ruth Hewitt; Dolph Hewitt
What Ruth Hewitt, Of Johnson Sisters and WGN Barn Dance, Passes Away At 89
When July 11, 2013
Where Osceola, FL

Ruth A. Hewitt passed away on July 11, 2013 in Murfreesboro, Tennessee.

Ruth was born in Lancing, Michigan, Raised on a farm in Grand Ledge. Her Parents were Marvin Johnson and Edith Haynes. Ruth had five other siblings in the family.

Ruth came from a musical background, her Dad played the guitar and Ruth would accompany him at the local PTA shows and later at the Grange Hall. This led to the creation of a singing duo with her sister Mary Jane known as "The Johnson sisters" The first song that they did together was "Ridin' Down the Old Texas Trail". They were in an amateur contest at a fair during farmer's week. Ruth along with sister Mary Jane won first prize and as a result, got a fifteen minute Saturday afternoon radio show over WKAR in Lansing, Michigan - it was the University of Michigan radio station. They continued with their show until they graduated in 1943. Grandma always said " I graduated on a Monday and on wednesday, I was on my way to Chicago".

Ruth worked together with Mary Jane for many years as an act. At one point they were on the WLW Boone County Jamboree. Later, they went to the KWK Shady Valley Gang show out of St. Louis, Missouri.

During that time in St. Louis, Ruth met the man who would be her future husband at KMOX, Dolph Hewitt. Later, They joined the Pappy Cheshire show in 1944.

Ruth and Dolph were married in Cleveland, Ohio when Dolph got out of the service. They were married at "The Old Stone Church" Ruth always told a story that she would not marry Dolph before he went to war. She said that if he loved her enough that he would come back to her to be married. She said "after some complications with the preacher I kissed Dolph and Mary kissed the preacher".

In 1964, Ruth teamed up with another sister Edith, after a cancelation on the National Barn Dance. Ruth said that Dolph told her to "see if she can sing a tune with Edith". After he found out they where pretty good he put them on the show as "The Johnson Sisters". Ruth and Edith would performe "Moonlight In Switzerland", displaying some of the yodeling talents. Ruth and Edith were also known for "Loving You Hurts Me So".

Ruth spent her entire career working with her husband Dolph Hewitt and her Sisters Mary & Edith. They traveled all over the country visiting fairs, doing personal appearances, Radio, and finished with the TV show "The WGN Barn Dance" which aired on WGN and beat out Bonanza one year in the 1960's for an Emmy Award.

The stories she would share were always of having the time of her life.

She is survived by her Sister Bertha Johnson, Step Children Shirley, Betty, Emma, and Grandson Adam Hewitt.

Funeral services will be held on Wednesday, July 17, 2013 at Osceola Memory Gardens Funeral Home in Kissimmee, FL with the family receiving friends on Wednesday from 10:00am to 12:00pm at the funeral home. Burial will follow at Osceola Memory Gardens.

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Contact Osecola Memory Gardens
Osceola Memory Gardens


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