Obituary for Clara Saint
Clara Ruth Saint was born in Jackson, Louisiana on June 26, 1938 as the oldest child of Thomas Joseph and Ruth Rhody Fore. After graduating from McKowen High School in 1956, Clara Ruth moved to West Feliciana Parish where she lovingly raised her family of four children. As her children grew, Clara Ruth held various offices in the local Home Demonstration Club and several Parish 4-H Clubs. In 1968, Clara Ruth went to work for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service (ASCS); now known as the Farm Service Agency. For 30 years she worked hard to see that all of “her farmers” received the technical and financial assistance needed to be successful. While working for ASCS, Clara Ruth became involved in her employee organization – first on a state level and then on the national level. She represented her fellow employees in Washington, DC both at the Ag Department and on Capitol Hill lobbying Congress. She received one of the organization’s highest honors, Service to National Association of ASCS Employees in 1994. She retired in 1996 and later served as national president of the organization’s retiree organization. She is survived by her four children. Sara Ferguson, Laura Spillman, Brian (Amy) Spillman and Don (Heather) Spillman, all of St. Francisville; a sister, Joan (David) Carpenter of Jackson; a brother, Tommy Fore of Atlanta, GA and a beloved cousin, Sara Sue (Sissy) Easterly of Denham Springs. She leaves behind ten grandchildren, Karley (B.T.) Rutledge of Natchitoches, Jill Ferguson of Baton Rouge, Mason Spillman, Lauren Reap, Piper Ferguson, Madi Reap, Barrow Clement, Emily Spillman, Alli Spillman and Bennett Clement, all of St. Francisville; one great grandchild, Gunner Rutledge of Natchitoches and three nieces, Michelle Donovan of Milton, Ga., Amy Kane of Brookhaven, Ga. and Debbie Huff of Brandon, MS and one nephew, Tim Fore of Sandy Springs, Ga. She is also survived by three stepchildren and eleven step-grandchildren. She is proceeded in death by her parents, Thomas Joseph and Ruth Rhody Fore, her husband, David Saint and a step son, Donald Saint.
Visitation will be on Wednesday, March 22, 2017 at St. Francisville United Methodist Church from 5:00 pm until 8:00 pm. Visitation will continue at the church on Thursday, March 23, 2017 from 10:00 am until service time at 12:00 noon. Burial will follow in Jackson Cemetery, Jackson.
Pallbearers will be Mason Spillman, Barrow Clement, Bennett Clement, B.T. Rutledge, Tim Fore and Will Saint. Honorary pallbearer is Michael Bennett.
Clara Ruth was involved in countless activities within West Feliciana Parish throughout her life, and for many years she served as the media spokesperson for the parish office of emergency preparedness. She was a charter member of the West Feliciana Historical Society, served on its board of directors and was chosen chairman of the Audubon Pilgrimage in 1990. She was a member of the West Feliciana Parish Tourist Commission for many years. As president, she served as the Commission’s representative on the Community Development Foundation Board. As a member of the African American Heritage Foundation, she worked to preserve the history of the African American influence in the parish by gathering oral histories from some of the parish’s oldest citizens.
She served as secretary to the Friends of Rosedown, a group dedicated to ensuring that Rosedown Plantation continues to be a premier tourist attraction. Clara Ruth was a member of the St. Francisville United Methodist Church and proudly served in many capacities there throughout the years. She was co-chair of Adults Coming Together Socially (ACTS) a committee that plans and prepares a monthly meal for parish residents over age 55. Next to her church, Clara Ruth’s first love was the West Feliciana Parish Library. She was appointed to the library board when West Feliciana broke away from the Audubon Regional Library and became self-sustaining. She was elected the board’s first president and remained in that position until her death. She worked tirelessly to acquire the donation of land to build the new facility, then lobbied the police jury to fund the construction. Her dream was at last fulfilled with the dedication of the new West Feliciana Parish Library in 2015. In addition to her civic and church activities, Clara Ruth belonged to an investment club, two book clubs, Friends of the Library, and a ladies monthly luncheon group. The family would like to express our sincere appreciation to all those that assisted her during her illness, especially Bobbie and Sherrelle of The Hospice of Baton Rouge. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in her name to the West Feliciana Parish Library, P. O. Box 3120 St. Francisville, La 70775, or Cancer Services of Greater Baton Rouge