Ernest Ruf “Ernie”

Ernest Ruf “Ernie”, 88, passed away peacefully from this life on April 1, 2023, with his wife by his side. He was preceded in death by both his mother and father, Alice and William Ruf. He had no brothers or sisters.

Ernie grew up in New York, attending a Catholic School until graduation. To continue his education, he took several college courses while living in New York. Ernie began his career with Met Life working for Honeywell computers as a field engineer. He made several moves during his career from New York out to California and some in between. Ernie finally ended up here in Hampton Roads working for Honeywell at Newport News Shipbuilding, where he retired after 30 years.

After retiring, Ernie followed his passion for flying. In January 1990 he joined the US Coast Guard Auxiliar as an active volunteer. Ernie participated in both aviation and surface operations. He qualified as an aircraft commander flying his own airplane in support of Coast Guard search and rescue missions, providing his fellow flotilla members with many hours of memorable aviation experiences. Ernie was also qualified as an Auxiliary Boat Crew member. He worked on member’s boats during safety patrols on local waterways and thereby significantly enhancing the safety of recreational boaters. He earned numerous awards during his 26 years of service, including (9) Auxiliary Operations service awards, (3) Coast Guard Meritorious team commendations, and (2) Auxiliary Member service awards. Ernie retired from the Auxiliary in September 2016.

There are so many good things one could say about Ernie, but there is not enough paper, or words to list them all. He was a kind gentle soul and everyone that knew him regarded him as someone interesting to talk with. He had a wealth of knowledge and could converse on any subject. Ernie was a simple man that didn’t want anyone fussing over him. In keeping with his wishes, there will be no traditional funeral.

Ernie will certainly be missed by all his friends and neighbors and mostly by his wife, Faye, and family. The thirty-one years that God blessed us with him, will always remain in my heart as the happiest in my lifetime. My tears today are with sadness, but someday will be with joy when we meet again. I will forever cherish the memories and keep you in my heart. Ernie’s ashes will be placed at the Albert G. Horton Jr. Memorial Veterans Cemetery, 5310 Milners Road, Suffolk, VA. There will be a private memorial service later with family members.



  1. Sue Rackley

    Faye, I am so sorry for your loss. I pray that you find peace in many precious memories. God bless you and keep you.
    Sue Rackley

  2. Carolyn Johnson

    My thoughts and prayers are with you Faye. As a neighbor of Ernie and Faye he will be missed. He is well and at peace and you two will meet again.

  3. Linda Chesser

    I met Ernie through my dad Olden Moore. He was a wonderful man. May God be with you Faye in this time of sorrow.
    Linda Chesser

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