Ms. Ruth J. Hawks was born in Warrenville, North Carolina, on January 12, 1928. Affectionately known as "Ruthie", she served Aberdeen Proving Ground, including the officers, soldiers, and civilians of the Ordnance Center and School, as photographer for more than 43 years until her death on November 15, 1995.
Her service stretched over the tenure of nearly two dozen post commandants and a like number of OC&S commandants and Chiefs of Ordnance. Always willing to go the extra mile, she often withstood cold and rain to cover training events by day and photograph official functions in the evenings. Despite this rigorous pace, Ruthie was always upbeat, full of energy, enthusiastic, and a dedicated professional. She tirelessly supported our soldiers and insisted that their true stories be told through accurate photos of their labors and activities.
When there was work to be done, no matter what the location, no matter what time of day, no matter what the weather conditions, Ruthie was there to capture, camera at the ready, important events on film. Her work, covering the efforts of Ordnance soldiers at work and at leisure, hangs on the walls of nearly every building at Aberdeen Proving Ground. Her photos have also appeared in numerous Army publications and newspapers, extolling the proud history of the Corps. Her outstanding artistic talent, coupled with her bright enthusiastic spirit made her an institution within the Ordnance Corps. Her selfless dedication to both her work and our soldiers won her the respect and admiration of the entire Ordnance community.