Barb was born in Elmwood Park, IL on 9/22/1923, the 4th child of Elmer and Johanna (Rausch) Engwall. She graduated from Joliet Community High School in 1951 and ISNU in 1954, with a degree in Physical Education. She would later go on to get her Masters at ISU.
She married Jake Ringger her husband of 53 years on July 2, 1955. They had 2 children. Greg of Gridley and Kim Scorti (Mike) of Middletown, Ohio as well as Soren Anderson their AFS student from Denmark who they also considered a son. They were blessed with 1 granddaughter, Trisha Alarcon (Freddy) of Oakland, Florida who was the absolute joy of their lives.
Her teaching career began in Skokie, IL where she taught for 1 year before marrying and moving to Gridley. She then taught in Lexington before starting her 30 year career in Gridley, retiring in 1990.
Barb loved sports and women’s sports “took off” during her early years in Gridley. First she was the Gridley Athletic Association advisor. Then over the years she coached jr. high and high school girls track, jr. high and high school girl’s volleyball, jr. high and high school girl’s cheerleading as well as high school girl’s bowling. During her coaching years she coached her high school volleyball team to 8 consecutive Midstate Conference Championships and 3 consecutive McLean County Tournament Championships. In 1989 nearly the end of her teaching career, Barb received the IEA District 14 Teacher Excellence award for which she was unknowingly nominated by her peers. She was also given the Honorary Distinguished Alumni award at Gridley schools.
After retiring, Barb began her second ‘Career’ of Volunteering and Community Service. While she was involved in many functions her favorites were being an ambulance driver for the Gridley squad, working at the Gridley Food Pantry and being an officer for the Gridley Schools Foundation from its inception in 1990 until 2017. Her other passion was being a Red Cross Disaster Volunteer with her most notable experience being at Ground Zero following 9-11serving food to the rescue workers with her counter part and dear friend Maralon. Her continuous volunteering and service to community led to her being named Volunteer of the Year at Gridleyfest in 1999.
While Barb and Jake always enjoyed travel, Barb took it to a new level in retirement spending winter months in Arizona, a trip to Europe to visit Soren and her nephew Carl, 2 trips to the Summer Olympic Games and a ride on a mule into the Grand Canyon at 67!
With all of this though, Barb was probably most known for her famous Chocolate Chip Cookies known as Aunt Barb’s Cookies (ABC’s) which she loved to give away.
Barb was a member of Christ Community Church of Gridley and the Women’s Fellowship. She loved family, service to church and community, the Gridley Redskins and the Chicago Cubs. She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband and her 2 sisters. She is survived by her brother William in Rapid City, SD and a brother-in-law Jim Ringger in Eureka, IL as well as many beloved nieces, nephews and friends.
Graveside services will be 1:30 P.M. Sunday, December 13, 2020 at Gridley Cemetery, Gridley with Pastor Andy Huette officiating. A private family visitation will be held. Calvert-Johnson & Froelich Memorial Home, El Paso is assisting the family with services. The family request memorials to the El paso-Gridley Foundation, El Paso, the Gridley Food Pantry, or the Gridley American Legion Post 218.