On January 27, 2021, Annette Veronika Ruedenberg, who was born in Ames in 1957, passed peacefully away at the home of her family in Ames as a result of a cancer of her lymphatic system. She is survived by her father Klaus Ruedenberg in Ames; by her former partner Rose Romano in San Francisco; by her sister Lucia Ruedenberg Wright and her two daughters Moriah and Tzameret, in Chelsea, Michigan; by her sister Ursula in Ames; and by her brother Emanuel Ruedenberg and his wife Patricia, with their two sons Lucas and Joshua in Minneapolis.
Annette was deeply motivated by the desire to help life around her. Even as an early teenager, she was a protective supervisor of her younger brother and his friends. In her early twenties, she spent two years in Basel, Switzerland, helping in the care of her aging maternal grandmother. She lived her last three years in Ames helping her father in his recovery from surgeries. For a decade, she took part in running the Ananda Ashram in Monroe, New York, where she also taught pranayama yoga and practiced yoga and meditation.
Her professional choices were guided by combining her caring inclination and her scientific bent. After finishing high school, she attended the premedical program at Iowa State University and at the Maui College of the University of Hawaii on Maui. She learned massage therapy at Heartwood Institute in California, and earned the degree of Physician Assistant at the Touro College School of Health Sciences in New York. She gained the degrees of Master of Social Work and Licensed Graduate Social Worker from St. Catherine - St. Thomas University in Minneapolis.
Annette also liked to dance. She became adept at the classical Kathak dance from India and spent some time at a Kathak center in India. Fusing her interest in dance and therapy, she gained the diploma of a Registered Dance/Movement Therapist from the American Dance Therapy Association.
Annette brought together her various healing abilities in her service at several hospitals. She served as physician assistant in the Emergency Ward of Harlem Hospital, in the gynecology department of Brooklyn Methodist Hospital and at the Spofford, Bridges and Horizon Juvenile Detention Centers in the Bronx. She served as a Dance/Movement Therapist in assisted living facilities in Minneapolis. She worked with a wide variety of clients, ranging from sex offenders to hospice patients and victims of Alzheimer's disease.
Annette had a perceptive mind, a lively personality, and an adventurous spirit. She enjoyed social gatherings and liked to organize celebrations. She loved children. For over a decade she became like a second mother to her two nephews in Minneapolis from their youngest years on.
Annette felt a close relationship with nature, and she liked to be active in nature. She gardened and tried to grow native Iowa prairie flora in the yard. She enjoyed the northern Minnesota woods, where she spent much time with and without her family. She loved to swim in lakes. She defended the rights of all animals and plants to exist, and she placed highest priority on the protection of the environment.
Annette was profoundly convinced of the transcendental roots of life, to which she felt deeply connected. She drew inspiration from many spiritual sources: Hindu, American Indian, Christian, Jewish, and others. Annette will be remembered as an intelligent human of vast good will to create health, love and joy.
Donations in memory of Annette to the following two causes would be in Annette's spirit. (1) The Central Iowa 4-H Camp Project of the Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation, which preserves, restores and makes accessible 1000 acres of natural native habitat of the former camp along the Des Moines River Valley near the Ledges State Park, preventing its urbanization. (https://www.inhf.org. then go to: Ways to Give, Support Current Protection Projects, Central Iowa 4-H Camp. The address of INFH is 505 Fifth Ave., Suite 444, Des Moines, IA 50309). (2) The Indigenous Environmental Network, which works for the rights of the indigenous people and the environment in Minnesota. (https://www.ienearth.org/ Address: PO Box 485, Bemidji, MN 56619).
Ames Monument & Cremation Center has been entrusted with the care of Annette and her family.
Annette left this world way too soon, but did good work while she was here. My condolences to her family.
Ani, I trust you are safely on the other side, laughing and dancing in the light. I am so grateful to have known you and called you my friend. I will always miss your caring spirit.
With Love, Jan Johnston
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