CLAY CENTER, Kan. -- Ruth Alice (Reese) McNish, 94, of Hiawatha and Clay Center, Kansas, died December 3, 2020 at the Clay County Medical Center after a brief illness.

Ruth was born on a farm in rural Hiawatha, Kansas July 28, 1926, to John Wesley and Marjorie (Picton) Reese.

Ruth graduated from Hiawatha High School in 1944, then Missouri Methodist Hospital, St. Joseph, Missouri in 1947 as an R.N., with honors.  Ruth married Justin Wayne McNish, a WWII Air Force veteran, KSU graduate and NRCS soil conservationist in 1948, a union lasting over 50 years and blessed with two sons, Thomas (spouse Mary) McNish, and John (spouse Laura) McNish.  Ruth served as an R.N. at Horton Hospital, Clay Center Medical Center and private doctors’ offices.  Ruth served as an elder for the Presbyterian Church and on the Board for Presbyterian Manor.  

Ruth is survived by her two sons and two grandsons, Joe and Tommy McNish.

Ruth was preceded in death by her husband, her parents, and brother John Wesley Reese, Jr., of Hiawatha, Kansas.

Minister:  Scott Lingle, Clay Center Presbyterian Church

A Clay Center church service and Hiawatha graveside service will be postponed until May-June 2021; further notice will be provided.

Memorials:  First Presbyterian Church of Clay Center, Kansas, c/o Neill-Schwensen-Rook Funeral Home.

Online condolences can be made at

Paid notice.