November 18, 2015 at 2:13 pm EST | by Joey DiGuglielmo
Ruth Spiegel dies at 88
Ruth Helen Weinstein Spiegel, gay news, Washington Blade

Ruth Helen Weinstein Spiegel

Ruth Helen Weinstein Spiegel died Oct. 22 at the Cohen-Rosen Residence at the Hebrew Home of Greater Washington in Rockville, Md., according to her family. She was 88 and died of “old age” her family said.

Two of Spiegel’s three sons were gay and she had “multiple LGBT descendants” according to her son, Charles Spiegel of San Francisco. She marched in Capital Pride parades with PFLAG and had a pink granite triangle installed at the family plot at Congressional Cemetery.

Spiegel was born in 1927 to Isidor and Frances Weinstein, grew up in Brooklyn and Great Neck, N.Y. Services were held Oct. 25 at the Congressional Cemetery Chapel. She was predeceased on Oct. 23, 1997 by her husband, George Spiegel, a Washington attorney.

Spiegel valued education, her family said. She was a graduate of Great Neck High School and Wellesley College (1948) where she was followed by her sister and niece.  She was active in her children’s preschool and as a PTA leader at Pinecrest Elementary School, both in Woodmore, Silver Spring, Md. She worked first at Little Brown & Co. in Boston.

While raising a family, among the other publishers she worked for as an editor was the Princeton University Press, Bollingen Series. Simultaneously Spiegel earned a master’s degree in classics at the Catholic University of America. She re-entered full-time work at the Smithsonian Institution Press in 1974 for the next 27 years, retiring as managing editor.

Spiegel lived for a decade in San Francisco largely to be near her youngest granddaughter. She was a member of PFLAG of Washington, and the American Association of University Women.

She is survived by sons John (Silver Spring, Md.), Ladd (New York City) and Charles (San Francisco); her sister Anne Miller (White Plains, N.Y.); five grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

Donations may be made in honor of Ruth’s life to a charity of your choice or to the Anacostia Community Museum Smithsonian Institution.

Joey DiGuglielmo is the Features Editor for the Washington Blade.

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