Ruth L. Fairbee, had colorful career

March 20, 2019

Ruth L. Fairbee, 82, of Lewes departed this life from her home Sunday, March 17, 2019.  She was born Dec. 12, 1936, in Barberton, Ohio, daughter of the late Glenn I. and Doris Ann (Webb) Neitz. She was also preceded in death by her brother Carl Neitz and sister Shirley Ann Neitz (Coffee).

Ms. Fairbee earned a bachelor's degree from Mount Union College, Alliance, Ohio, and built a career in education as an elementary school teacher.  She was also a swimming instructor. Ruth said that teaching students to swim was one of her great joys.

Upon moving to Lewes her career took many turns, from working at Nassau Orchards to working for the University of Delaware, to pharmacy tech at Beebe Healthcare, and finally retiring from Tom Best.

Retirement then allowed her to be involved in many other things in and around Lewes. She was not an idle woman. Seldom home, she was always looking for an event or program to be involved with or attend. One of these groups, Unity Church was a place in which she found comfort, peace and opportunities to do good work.

Most recently, she drew closer to her daughter Gail, with time well spent fixing computers and just being together. Other family members and friends were always important to Ruth. She could tell you all about people in her life from the past as well as new friends. "Gaw" was a loving and devoted mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, sister and friend who was loved by many and will be deeply missed by all who knew her.

Mrs. Fairbee is survived by her daughter, Gail M. Burgess (Dickie) of Milford; her grandchildren: Sarah J. Burress (Jason) of Milford and Richard H. Burgess of Milford; her great-grandsons: Carter A. Burress and Clark H. Burress, both of Milford; her sister, Marilyn Narby of Syracuse, N.Y.; many nieces and nephews, as well as grandnieces and grandnephews.

A Memorial Service will be held Monday, March 25, at 11 a.m., at Parsell Funeral Homes and Crematorium, Atkins-Lodge Chapel, 16961 Kings Highway, Lewes, where friends may visit beginning at 10 a.m.  Interment will be private.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Brandywine Valley SPCA Georgetown, DE at

Please visit Mrs. Fairbee's Life Memorial Webpage and sign her online guest book at