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Socorro Waugh

Socorro Pulido Waugh was born on February 18, 1925 to Maria Ramirez, in Tuxpan, Veracruz, Mexico. Her childhood years were spent growing up and attending school in this village while working alongside her mother as household staff for an affluent family.

In 1947, Socorro left her mother and her home and traveled 440 miles to Monterrey, Mexico to take advantage of an opportunity to attend nursing school. While there, she lived at the hospital and attended nursing school during the day, which involved both classroom and clinical time. She spent her evenings working as hospital staff as payment for her education. Once her evening shift ended, she would wash her only uniform and then study/prepare for the following day, where she repeated the same cycle.

After graduating from nursing school, Socorro and a few of her classmates traveled to the United States and started their nursing careers in a hospital in Mission, Texas. This hospital later closed and the group then traveled to Des Moines, IA (Mercy Hospital) as nurses were needed there. As soon as she could afford to, she brought her mother to Des Moines to be with her.

It was while working in Des Moines that she met her future husband, Denzil Waugh. Denzil and Soco (as she was fondly called - and easier to pronounce for most!) were married on June 16, 1956 and made their home on the family farm in southern Ringgold County. Their family was made complete with the adoption of 2 children: Eugene Mark in 1959, and Martha Ann in 1962. Soco's mother, Maria, also lived with them, as well as Virgil Findley, family friend, who took care of the farm, as Denzil and Soco both worked outside the home. Socorro took great pride in studying and completing the steps to achieve her United States Citizenship. She felt very strongly that all who came to the United States should "do it the right way" and learn the language and complete the steps to obtain legal citizenship. In 1957, Socorro began working at Ringgold County Hospital. After a short time she went to work for Dr. Fell in his practice, as his office nurse. In addition, she would scrub for surgery at Ringgold County Hospital with Drs. Gamet & Swanson, who took care of Dr. Fell's surgical patients in the early days of his practice. In 1958, she again became a full time employee at Ringgold County Hospital and worked there until her final retirement in 2000. She was a nurse at heart and gave her all for her patients, the hospital and her community. She mentored many young nurses over the years and was known for her "no nonsense" approach to healthcare.

Everyone has a "Soco story" - some patients were not exactly happy with her at the time, but later admitted that they knew that she always had their best interest at heart when caring for them, and loved and appreciated her for that. Many nurses share stories about how much she taught them in the early years of their practice - she was fondly referred to as "Ma Waugh". There are those who speculate that, over the years, she helped deliver a majority of the babies in Ringgold County and the surrounding communities, and she considered those children "her kids" as well! Family, friends and community meant everything to her. She cared for anyone in need, not only in the hospital setting, but in the community as well. She was always checking up on neighbors & friends who were ill, had surgery, or just very busy with work and family, and helping however she could. She was a beloved neighbor and friend. In addition, her grandchildren were her pride and joy. Her face lit up every time they came to visit and she had a ready hug and kiss or a back scratch for them. She was so proud of them, their accomplishments, and the amazing young adults they were becoming.

Socorro is preceded in death by her husband, Denzil; mother, Maria Ramirez; parents-in-law, Clyde and Clara Belle Waugh; brothers-in-law, Eldred Waugh and Stuart Elder; sisters-in-law, Vincel Elder and Pauline (Bill) Barber; niece, Mary (Larry) Dossey; nephew, William C. Elder; family friend, Virgil Findley.

Left to cherish her memory are children, Eugene (Linda) Waugh and Martha (Brent) Ricker; grandchildren, Dana (Matt) Churchill, Jessie, Jake and Joe Ricker; step-grandchildren, Jan Moran and Randy Lear (Kerri Simmerman); great-grandson, Jackson Churchill; step-great-grandson, Alexander Wright; nieces, Barbara Bellizzi, Maria Elder, Shari (Steve) Turner; many great and great-great-nieces and nephews; and a community of people whose lives have been touched in one way or another by her care and kindness.

A memorial fund has been established in her name.

  • Open Viewing

    November 01, 2015
    12:00 PM to 8:00 PM

    Watson-Armstrong Funeral Home

    205 West Monroe St
    Mount Ayr, IA

  • Family Will Be Present

    November 01, 2015
    6:00 PM to 8:00 PM

    Watson-Armstrong Funeral Home

    205 West Monroe St
    Mount Ayr, IA

  • Nurse's Honor Guard

    November 01, 2015
    6:00 PM to 8:00 PM

    Watson-Armstrong Funeral Home

    205 West Monroe St
    Mount Ayr, IA

  • Nurse's Tribute Ceremony

    November 01, 2015
    8:00 PM

    Watson-Armstrong Funeral Home

    205 West Monroe St
    Mount Ayr, IA

  • Funeral Service

    November 02, 2015
    10:30 AM

    Watson-Armstrong Funeral Home

    205 West Monroe St
    Mount Ayr, IA

  • Burial

    Monday November 02 2015

    Hickory Grove Cemetery

    South of
    Mount Ayr, IA


To plant memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Socorro Waugh, please visit our flower store.



Guestbook

So sorry for your loss of Socorro. She was a wonderful, caring, giving soul. I know she will be missed so much by so many people but especially her family. I have so many memories of her. She gave my siblings & me a dog when I was young. She had already named the dog when she gave it to us. The dog''s name was Chickitta. We all loved that dog and was very thankful she gave it to us. Another memory I have of her was when she was my brother Dale''s nurse. He had been in a car wreck & was in a coma for several days. She took really good care of him and we was very thankful for that as well. We heard the story several times about how he was coming out of the coma and she was giving him a shot. He was not fully awake yet & hit her. She was not a very big lady. I''m sure it hurt but she was right back in there taking care of him the next day. She was tough. Sending our deepest sympathy to all of her family. May God bless each of you. May you find stength, peace, & comfort in your fond memories of her. She is in good hands now. Hugs & love to all of you.

Posted by Sherry Davidson - Grant City, MO - Friend   November 02, 2015

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

Soco was a great lady. Always looking for ways to help you out when she could. She was a mother to me and my siblings for a whole summer. Again going above and beyond my family''s need. Love you Soco

Posted by Theresa Petersen - West Des Moines, IA - Family friend   November 01, 2015

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

Socorro was such a good person and an outstanding nurse. I had the pleasure of working with her for about 12 years at Ringgold County Hospital. I won''t lie, she used to scare the hell out of me as a new person learning my role. I grew to respect her and even after I left Ringgold County Hospital the more I worked in medicine, the more I appreciated her great nursing care and knowledge that she possessed. She was a hard worker and always provided great medical care to all of her patients. You will be sadly missed. I honor you today for a life well lived.

Posted by Julie Routh - Osceola,, IA - friend   November 01, 2015

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

im sorry for u love one may god be with your family

Posted by Jo Davis - fort walton beach, FL - none   October 31, 2015

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

Gene,Martha and family, It is with a heavy heart that I write this. I have many fond memories of your mom. I LOVED her straight forward attitude at times. But with a gentle heart . I know she supported you both in whatever you did, but you already knew that huh! Thinking of you guys !!!

Posted by Steve Knapp - Redding, IA - friends   October 30, 2015

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

Soco it was a privilege getting to take care of you. You are a wonderful woman and you will be sadly missed. May you rest high up there in heaven. God bless you and your family. Love always...your beautiful girl aka Ashley Guy CNA

Posted by Ashley - Lamoni, IA - Caregiver   October 30, 2015

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

Martha and Gene my thoughts are with you both today- as we grow older I fear the day I have to say good bye to my parents :( I know this lady gave every bit of love inside her to each of you and your families and I know she felt all that love and pride that you brought into her heart, Socorro was an Amazing lady- and the smile those kiddos brought into her life with all their achievements just fills my heart with joy- Love you guys- T

Posted by Teresa Jackson - Mount Ayr - friend   October 30, 2015

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

My thoughts and prayers go out to Eugene and Martha and your families. Have such wonderful and fun memories working with Soco years ago at the old hospital. She touch and mentored me as aI pursued a nursing career, She knew how to enjoy life. She touched many lives with her compassion. Peace to all of her family.

Posted by Gwen Trullinger - Mount Ayr, IA - friend   October 30, 2015

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

My deepest sympathy to Martha and family and Eugene and his family ..... She was a wonderful Nurse and person wrapped all together ..... She will be missed by many ....... My Prayers to the family

Posted by Marla (Woollums) Cook - Urbandale, IA - friend   October 29, 2015

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

Soco, We loved you in this life and can''t wait to see you in the next! We have so many great fun memories with you and Denzil in Mexico, Brent and Martha''s house, Bob and Lucy''s and our house! I can see you riding in the sand rail with a smile on your face! Another memory is you taking care of me for two weeks in the Ringgold County Hospital when I burned by legs. You made me follow all of the doctor''s orders! And being a teenager at the time, I didn''t always want to! But you took wonderful care of me! Our thoughts, prayers and love are with Martha, Brent, Jessie, Jake, Joe, Dana and Gene. Michell Ricker

Posted by Michell Ricker - Ellston, IA - friend   October 29, 2015

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM