Cover photo for Nancy Thomas Rude's Obituary
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1931 Nancy 2014

Nancy Thomas Rude

April 25, 1931 — February 7, 2014

Madison - Nancy Thomas Rude, age 82, passed away on February 7, 2014 while at Meriter Hospital in Madison.

Nancy was born on April 25, 1931 in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, the daughter of A. Russell and Helen (Speirs) Thomas. Nancy graduated from Doylestown High School and later graduated from Penn State University.

Nancy was a member of Zeta Phi Eta, Alpha Omicron Pi, and was President of the University League. She volunteered for many years at UW Hospital, the Ronald McDonald House, Agrace Thrift Store, Tandem Press, and Wisconsin Public Television.

Nancy enjoyed traveling, bird watching, volunteer work, the symphony, and collecting art. Her greatest joy was found on the stage when acting and singing. She appeared in over forty plays with Madison Theatre Guild, Children's Theatre of Madison, and Madison Civic Repertory Theatre. The highlight of Nancy's acting career was her performance as Bloody Mary in South Pacific at the Fireside Theatre in Ft. Atkinson. She also loved her roles as Golde in Fiddler on the Roof and as Frauline Schneider in Caberet.

Holidays were Nancy's favorite time of year. She set new standards for over-decorating her home at Christmas time. Her collection of Santa Claus figures, Snow Village houses, and Christmas tree ornaments were her pride and joy. Her Thanksgiving dinner - especially the turkey - are legendary. She made holidays wonderful for her entire family.

In September of 2013, Nancy celebrated 60 years of marriage to her husband, Eric. Eric and Nancy met at Penn State University in State College, Pennsylvania. They were avid travelers and especially enjoyed many trips to Lake Tomahawk in Northern Wisconsin and to St. George Island, Florida.

Nancy is survived by her husband, Eric of Madison; three children, Karen Rude-Evans of Madison, Jon (Becky) Rude of Verona and Mark (Patricia) Rude of Ventura, CA; two grandchildren, Erica Grace Evans of Denver and John Thomas Evans of Madison.

Nancy was preceded in death by her parents, a daughter, Erica Christine Rude and a sister-in-law, Gail Lopresto.

In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to Agrace HospiceCare in Nancy's memory.

A memorial gathering will be held on Saturday, April 19, 2014 from 2:00 - 4:00 p.m. at Olbrich Botanical Gardens, 3330 Atwood Ave, Madison, Wisconsin.
To order memorial trees in memory of Nancy Thomas Rude, please visit our tree store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Saturday, April 19, 2014

2:00 - 4:00 pm (Eastern time)

Olbrich Botanical Gardens

3330 Atwood Ave, Madison, WI 53704

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