Ruth Ann Elsbecker

April 20, 1935 — May 2, 2018

A funeral Mass for Ruth Ann Elsbecker was held Monday, May 7, 2018, at 10:30 a.m., at St. John’s Catholic Church with the Rev. Steven McLoud and the Rev. Clem Curran officiating. Burial was in St. John’s Catholic Cemetery.

Ruth Ann Elsbecker was born on April 20, 1935, the second child of James “Jake” and Alice (Phillips) Becker. She grew up on the family farm near Livermore and attended St. Joseph Catholic School until her family moved to their farm west of Bancroft. Ruth Ann graduated from St. John’s Catholic High School in Bancroft in 1953.

Ruth Ann married Eugene Elsbecker on Aug. 17, 1955, at St. John’s Catholic Church in Bancroft. Nine children were born to this union. When Ruth Ann’s seventh child, Nancy, was 5 years old, she started a day care in their home. She went on to care for most of the young children in Bancroft at one time or another, continuing to have a day care until 2006.

Ruth Ann was always busy taking care of her household, making homemade apple pie, painting ceramics, and cleaning. Her grandchildren’s favorite part about Christmas was her homemade chicken and kniddelen “cloud” soup. Ruth Ann also took many day trips with her sister Annette, her sister-in-law Jackie, and her friends. Whether they went shopping, played slot machines, or ate Chinese, it was always a successful day. Ruth Ann and Gene also enjoyed the times they would have at card club or going square dancing with their friends. She was a member of St. John’s Catholic Church being active in the Catholic Daughters of the Americas and the St. John’s Altar Society.

Ruth Ann died Wednesday, May 2, 2018, at Kossuth Regional Health Center, Algona, under the care of Hospice of the Heartland. She was 83.

She is survived by her husband of nearly 63 years, Eugene Elsbecker of Bancroft; nine children, Gary (Marcia) Elsbecker of Jackson, Minn., Deborah (Frank) Flaherty of Burnsville, Minn., Diane Elsbecker of Waterloo, Gregg (Eileen) Elsbecker of Bancroft, Jay (Agnes) Elsbecker of Gilbert, Ariz., Dean (Shawn) Elsbecker of Sioux City, Nancy (Patrick) Degen of Emmetsburg, Nikki (Steve) Wagner of Urbandale, and Jodi (Chris) Alt of Algona; 24 grandchildren, Peter Dennis, Caleb Doyle, Chris McIntosh (special friend Ellen Malven), Caitlin (Matt) Dreckman, Abby, Allison and Samantha McIntosh, Benjamin (Eden) Flockhart, Elizabeth (Patrick) Smith, Joseph Flockhart, Nicole Elsbecker, Joshua (Sarah) Elsbecker, Kevin Elsbecker, Jacob (Trista) Elsbecker, Mychal (Carrie) Elsbecker, Anthony Elsbecker, Michelle Reisner, Cassandra (Bear) Moeller, M. Alexander Weaver, Rebecca, Mark, and Aaron Wagner, and Dylan and Logan Alt; and 17 great-grandchildren. She is also survived by many nieces and nephews; and many additional relatives and friends.


She was proceeded in death by her parents; her sister Annette Kockler; her brother Marvin Becker; a son-in-law, Donald McIntosh; and a granddaughter, Shannon Elsbecker.

Oakcrest Funeral Services of Bancroft in charge of arrangements. Online condolences may be made to


Kossuth County Advance

14 E. Nebraska St.

Algona, IA 50511  

Phone: (515) 295-3535

Fax: (515) 295-7217

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