Mrs. Ruth Cassel

Jim and Ruth Cassel

From the age of six to eighteen Ruth studied piano and organ with Mrs. Grace Burget, the organist at the Altoona Christian Church in Iowa. She was a music major at Drake University in Des Moines. A reed pump organ was the instrument she learned on until a new Hammond organ was purchased with a pedal board, or a keyboard to play the bass notes with the feet. What fun!

Nineteen years of age found Ruth playing in Waimea, Kauai, for the Hawaiian Church, the Christian Church, and the Foreign Church. Blessings often follow a disaster. After Hurricane Iniki, these three churches united to become the Waimea United Church of Christ. A new Rogers' Electronic Pipe Organ has been played by Ruth since that time in the UCC sanctuary, formerly the Foreign Church.  Eight years of organ study with Melvin Gallagher, UCC Minister of Music was a wonderful learning experience for her.

Ruth has been blessed by her church family during the fifty-four years as organist in Waimea. Fifty of those years were with husband Jim, choir director who was also a music major at Drake University. Jim still sings as tenor in the choir.