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Ruth Elizabeth Croft

October 2, 1922 ~ February 2, 2024 (age 101) 101 Years Old

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Ruth Elizabeth Waterfield Croft
10/02/1922 - 02/02/2024


Ruth Croft passed away peacefully in her sleep into the arms of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on February 2, 2024 at the age of 101.

She was born in Washington DC on October 2, 1922, and her family moved to central Florida when she was around 4 years old. After graduating from Bartow High School, she married the love of her life Wilford Carleton (W.C.) “Dub” Croft in 1941 in Highland City, FL. They had four children.

Ruth was one tough cookie, all 4’11” of her. She was a dedicated, disciplined, and driven wife, mother, grandmother (and “Bingong”). While Dub was off fighting in WWII, she bought 5 acres of land with two homes on it in Eaton Park, moved there, and eventually established Croft Mobile Home Park years later in 1973. After Dub passed away in 1996, she ran the park by herself for 25 years up until she was nearly 97 years old. The park remains in operation to this day.

In the 60’s, they built a home in Ozello, where her family spent many weekends fishing and eating tons of smoked mullet and hushpuppies. She enjoyed traveling every year to the Smokey Mountains in hopes that it would snow. Her hobby was crocheting. She loved to crochet blankets and bonnets for her great and great-great grandchildren, up until she was well into her 90’s. Ruth also loved her Boston Terrier, Bullet. He was her right-hand man after Dub passed away.

Ruth is survived by two sons; Glenn Croft (Sandy) and Ernest Croft (Ellen), 12 grandchildren; Reece Croft (Laurie), Lori Mason (Bruce), Scott Croft (Torii), Mark Croft, Angie Brown (Rick), Ernest “Grasshopper” Croft, Jr, Paula Hunter (Tim), Melissa Miller (James Ray), Glenn Croft, Jr (Meghan), Tim Parker (Joni), Jason Parker (Macara), and Penny Parker, 29 great grandchildren and 15 great-great grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her husband of 54 years, her son Wilford Croft, Jr, daughter Nyona Elizabeth Parker, and brother Kenneth Waterfield.

Ruth’s family will forever carry her memories in their hearts and continue her legacy of love and faith by having a celebration of her life on February 8, 2024 at the Lakeland Funeral Home, 2125 Bartow Rd, Lakeland, FL 33801. Visitation will be held at 1pm and services at 2pm.


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Click here to view a webcast of the service on 2/8/2024 at 01:55 PM, Eastern Standard Time.

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