Ruth Luttrell, Co-Founder and President Emeritus Calvary Evangelistic Mission, Goes to be with Jesus
By Boaz Wadel
Ruth Tidik was born in Lakewood, Ohio on Aug. 22 1926, one of six children of parents from Austria and Czechoslovakia who became American citizens.
According to an obituary by The Rock Radio Network (TRRN), she went to be with the Lord on March 15 2014, surrounded by her family and loved ones.
Ruth Luttrell was known as "Mama" Ruth to many for her loving missionary work in the Caribbean, which spanned many decades and different countries.
Together with her husband, the late Dr. Donald D. Luttrell, she founded Calvary Evangelistic Mission, Inc. Today that encompasses the Bible Correspondence School of the Caribbean and The Rock Radio Network (WBMJ AM-1190 San Juan, WIVV AM 1370 Vieques, WCGB AM 1060 Juana Díaz).
After high school she studied secretarial sciences while working as a clerk. She married Donald Luttrell after his discharge from the U.S. Army in 1946, and they continued their college education together.
Ruth studied at the Baptist Bible Institute in Cleveland, Ohio (now Cedarville College) and at Bob Jones University. TRRN said she served with her husband in assistant pastorates in Ohio and Florida, and in Christian education and youth work while he studied for his Master's Degree in Education and Doctor of Divinity Degree.
They have a number of children.
In 1952, the Luttrells started their missionary educational and mass media work in Puerto Rico, the Caribbean and Latin America.
They founded the parent organization, Calvary Evangelistic Mission, Inc., in 1953; the Bible Correspondence School of the Caribbean in 1954 (over 24,000 enrolled students in the West Indies, other countries and extension schools in Guatemala, India and Myanmar); and Missionary Radio WIVV AM-1370 on Vieques in 1956 (covers Eastern PR, the Virgin and Leeward Islands).
In 1963, the Mission's headquarters was moved to San Juan. WBMJ AM-1190 in San Juan was acquired and started full-time Christian programming in 1986.
WBMJ's programming is now simulcast with WIVV's over The Rock Radio Network.
The Mission's stated purpose is to win, train, challenge, and motivate people to live and work for Jesus Christ, based on 2 Timothy 2:2 "And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also."
During the first eleven years the Luttrells lived on Vieques Island, Ruth helped manage the government outpatient clinic while her husband traveled with Youth for Christ International.
As a representative of Child Evangelism Fellowship International, she organized and taught child evangelism classes to leaders for several years on three islands. She served at the Mission's Servicemen's Center and with her husband in the civilian chaplaincy at Camp Garcia for nine years, and taught in the Mission's elementary school.
As Co-Founder, TRRN said Ruth has filled the position of CEO and president since her husband's death in May 1987.
Ruth participated with her husband in "Mission Methods Seminars" in various countries in a world-wide work tour.
She also helped edit his book, "God's Great Commission ... and You." Ruth participated in the annual National Religious Broadcasters Conventions from 1968 onward.
In Oct. 1987, TRRN said, Ruth was appointed to fill her late husband's term on NRB's Board of Directors, and was subsequently reelected.
TRRN said the Luttrells received awards for service in Christian ministry, missionary radio, social and civic work from various organizations and governments.
In Feb. 2006, Ruth was awarded the "Milestone Award" at the National Religious Broadcasters Convention for broadcasting over 50 years.
TRRN said, "Her greatest desire was to bring honor and glory to Almighty God as His faithful servant, ministering to mankind."