April 14, 2022

Ruth Alene Birdsell, 73, of Mt. Olive, Ill., died Thursday, April 7, 2022, at OFS St. Anthony’s Health Center in Alton. Ruth was born in Alton on Jan. 30,1949, to Clarence and Nettie Mildred (Ruyle) Pickering. She attended Worden Schools and graduated in 1967. She married Gene Birdsell on July 15,1978, at Mt. Olive Methodist Church. He survives.

Ruth was a homemaker, an avid reader, and enjoyed bird watching. Some of her other favorite activities included visiting Branson, Mo., and vacationing in Florida, especially visiting Sea World. She was an animal lover. Ruth's greatest joy was spending time with her family. She was a member of the Southern Baptist Church in Staunton.

Ruth is survived by her husband, Gene Birdsell; two sons, Rick Birdsell of Mt. Olive and Gene (Stacy) Birdsell Jr. of Hamel; a daughter, Rebecca Birdsell of Mt. Olive; eight grandchildren, Lucas, Landon, Ella, Chelsea (Devin), Dylan (Elizabeth), Ethan, Bryce, Lauren; seven great-grandchildren; and a sister, Shirley Cardwell. She was preceded in death by her parents, and a sister, Charlotte Pike.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday, April 13, at Becker & Son Funeral Home in Mt. Olive with Rev. Nancy Hubert Officiating. Burial will be at the Mt. Olive City Cemetery. Masks are recommended but not required.

Memorials are suggested to the Mt. Olive Academic Association, Mt. Olive Library, and Adopt-A-Pet in Benld. Condolences may be left online at

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