An artist whose work lives on through her lessons and encouragement

Dear Editor,

A large gathering of artist friends and family of beloved artist Ruth Laird Pistor were present at a beautiful farewell aloha memorial for her Oct. 29 at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Kailua. Ruth passed away Aug. 20 at age 90.

I first met her some 22 years ago when I joined the Windward Artists Guild. What a great blessing it was to know her. Ruth was a real “trooper” – she was always happy, ready to offer help and art suggestions.

And although she excelled at her art and won many awards, she was always very modest and unassuming and a continual student who practiced relentlessly.

Ruth took over the reins of Windward Artists Guild after my term as president in 1995 and went on to fill out two terms when there were no volunteers to take over from her. She literally “saved” the WAG.

She was one of the most loyal supporters of my art. She attended nearly two dozen of my show openings without fail! Wow!

I loved Ruth like a sister, and when she got the bad news about her threatening health situation, she took it like it was a prediction of some bad weather and said she was not afraid. She was a lady of great spiritual faith.

Many folks were unaware that Ruth showed up unheralded for many years of weekly visits to the Women’s Community

Correctional Center and taught the inmates how to paint.

In his eulogy Rev. Todd Capen shared that although his church does not designate saints, in Ruth’s case he would surely call her one!

Rest in peace, Ruth. We will dearly miss you.

Warren Stenberg

(Editor’s note: Donations suggested at the time of Ruth Pistor’s funeral were to the Total Life Recovery Program at Fishnet Ministries at P.O. Box 6301, Kaneohe, HI 96744 or email Her prison art lessons were a part of that transforming program for the women inmates.)