This site was created as a portal to share stories and celebrate the life of Marty Ruberry, who was a deeply beloved friend and source of inspiration to many. We have uploaded some collected stories to the Stories page here, so anyone can access them and leave comments.
We encourage you to share your own stories by sending them to email@example.com so we can add them to the collection.
Use the “Leave a Reply” box at the bottom of each page to share comments about Marty or the stories.
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After watching the slideshow, everything we remember and enjoyed about Marty remains in focus. He was a person who truly loved people, and we were among the many beneficiaries of his warm and welcoming personality. He was a special guy, and we will miss him greatly.
Denise and Jerry Reed
“If someone asks to buy me a drink and I turn it down, I obviously didn’t understand the question”. Marty Ruberry
He was rarely the funniest man in the room, but easily the one that could make you smile and laugh better than anyone.
Marty was a great friend for almost 50 years, in my wedding, and Uncle Marty to my kids. Our paths first crossed when he arrived in Sunnyvale and I was just leaving the Recreation Department in Sunnyvale. We became instant friends in the early 70’s, played just about every sport together or against each other, had many many final finals, enjoyed multiple 10-12 hour rounds/days/nights of golf, and enjoyed new, old, and common friends annually.
How can I even pick just a few stories from the many? So here is “one day” I remember that was typical Marty, the leader of men.
We attended the NRPA Convention (parks & recreation) in Washington DC together. We decided to attend the opening general session at which Margaret Mead was the keynote speaker and got there early to get good seats up front and on the aisle. Ten minutes into her speech Marty turned to me and asked if I was ready to go. I nodded and we turned left and began our exit out of the full auditorium. As we exited we noted Margaret had stopped speaking. The exit took forever and she only continued once we hit the door. For the next three days people would point us out as the ones that walked out on Margaret Mead.
That day was far from over as one of our “to do’s” in DC was to run out to Arlington and visit the JFK Memorial. Yes, Marty was once a good runner and a 5-6 mile jog was no problem for him. Upon our arrival we asked directions to the flame and headed out through the cemetery. Soon we came upon a funeral in session with lots of black cars and military uniforms. Marty thought we should run around the cars so as not to disturb anyone. After running past a few cars we heard HALT! HALT! from two of the uniformed officers. Marty said he would take care of this and approached the two guards.
They talked and talked and talked. Upon his return Marty went on and on that one of the guard’s bothers had gone to Brother Rice in Chicago (Marty’s high school). I asked him if we could now proceed and Marty said they advised us to stand quietly over by the cars. After a few long minutes, Marty started side stepping away from the cars and guards and then said to “start running”. As we ran passed a few more cars we heard HALT! HALT! Marty said “run faster” and we finally escaped his new friends and eventually ended up safe at the memorial. Long day and not even one Cuba Libre yet!
As Marty always reminded us “You really have to work hard in life at not having a good time!” We will miss all the good times with Marty, but life will never be quite the same without his empirical wisdom, humor, and friendship. Thanks Marty for a half century of fun & friendship. We all hope to see you again. Love you, Pat
Great story, Pat!
Mr. Ruberry, What An Unbelievable Person!
Mr. Ruberry was someone I respected, enjoyed immensely and learned a mammoth amount of insider information from. He taught me a multitude of ways on how to maneuver around such a prestigious country club as M.P.CC. He treated everyone with respect. He made it a point to get to know all of the new Members and actually all the Members family names, birthdates, what college, high school, and elementary schools they went to, where they lived and where they were born. He was a friend to all Members and treated the staff with grace and respect. Mr. Ruberry was the Golf Activities Committee Chairman for two terms in a row, which equated to about six years or so. In effect, I reported to the GAC and thus I spent many hours conversing with Mr. Ruberry introspectively about the Club, life, and sports, particularly the golf world. Often our conversations morphed into family values, the art of having fun, and the politics of the Club. However, even though I heard that Mr. Ruberry had been President of Sharon Heights, like always when I would start working with a new Member on a committee, I wondered how he would do as the Golf Activities Chair and to be honest, how the two of us would get along. The first thing I noticed was he always had his “binder of facts” with him which required me to develop a “binder of facts” as well, just to attempt to keep up. I did realize very quickly that I had to be on my toes when talking about facts, numbers, and how to create win-win situations. He was extraordinarily sharp, well organized, and he knew how to maneuver around the politics of the Club much better than I, and in fact, better than most. It took him about a second to figure me out. However, in time he became a mentor and a good friend through that process. I remember one time I arranged to go to a U.S.G.A. Rules Seminar at the beginning of his first term as the GAC Chair. I was somewhat nervous wondering what he would say to me being in Hawaii for a school. I figured I’d better call him and check-in. His first response was, “David, please don’t worry about the Club and just enjoy yourself as much as you can attending a U.S. G.A. Rules Seminar. The Club will be here when you return.” At that point, I knew that he understood the plight of a Head Professional very acutely, which gave me great comfort. Hawaii sounds like a lot of fun but have any of you read the U.S.G.A.Decision Book and then been required to take a test after the seminar? I once gave him a golf lesson and I asked him what part of his game was the best and he said chipping and putting. He proceeded to show me his Ping Cushin putter and told me he had several spares in the garage just in case he would lose one! I found that very funny at the time, but frankly, it was pretty smart. His chipping too was amazing. Believe me because of my own chipping issues, after watching his chipping, I thought I should be taking the lesson from him.
During our discussions about the Club, I came away understanding recreation much better than I thought I ever could. Maybe that was because Mr. Ruberry literally and figurately, had a Masters in recreation. He once said “If you remember one thing David, remember this, our Members are here to recreate. They want to leave their outside life at home, come to the Club and be treated with respect and have a ton of fun!” I know that it helped me understand more clearly what most Members wanted at the Club. I, in turn, trained my staff to think along with those terms as well. In our discussions, once we would go through the business of the Club, we generally moved to thoughts and views about my family and often he would tell me about his family, which as you all know he adored.
When I left the Club I was able to reconnect with my mentor. I visited him often and always came away with a humorous yet profound way of looking at life. He knew that is exactly what I needed, as he always had done. He made people feel like they were the most important person in the room to him. That in itself, is a rare gift, one that Mr. Ruberry had in spades. I will miss him and our visits very much. I know he is resting in paradise and holding court in the house of fun.
With gratitude and tremendous respect,
WHAT ELSE CAN BE SAID ABOUT HIM AFTER ALL THESE COMMENTS. —FOR ME MARTY WAS A GOOD, FUN GUY AND I MISS NOT SEEING HIM
Marty Ruberry is unforgettable! His Social I.Q and a memory for names, faces and stories was off the charts. Always friendly, welcoming and warm. Greatly missed by all of us who were blessed to know him as A FRIEND.