Ruby Riggins devotes her life to Plainview parks after 50 years of nursing

Published: Jul. 28, 2022 at 4:56 PM CDT
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LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - When many people retire, they will relax. But not Ruby Riggins. After a lifetime of nursing, she gave that up to focus her attention on the city she loves.

“I was born October 15, 1941, in Plainview, so I’ve been here all my life,” Ruby said.

Eighty years in Plainview and Ruby Riggins will tell you this is her happy place - Givens Park.

“We have all kinds of family reunions and celebrations and vacation bible school and just all kinds of things down here. And it’s such a beautiful park,” she said.

Ruby was a nurse for 50 years, but for 30 years, she was also on the park’s advisory board.

Since she retired from nursing, she has shifted all her energy to improving the Plainview parks.

“Because I love the city. And I want to be a part of it. I want to see Plainview grow,” she said. “These kids can come down here, and they can walk, they can play, they can have all kinds of exercises. You know, it’s just important to me, but not just the kids in this area, not just this park, but all the parks of the Plainview.”

For years, Ruby has been on the committee to develop a master plan to redesign the 16 parks in Plainview. Including lighted pavilions, walking trails, soccer fields and much more. It is a big deal.

“It sure is. And we’ve been working on it forever!” she exclaimed.

From a picnic table with family and friends to city hall with the powers that be, on the day to vote on the master plan - it passed, but not before a special announcement from Mayor Charles Starnes, who gave Ruby the very first “opportunity to reality” award.

Ruby was visibly surprised. Phyllis Wall was not.

“That’s what I see in Ruby.. she has that desire to make a difference every day when she wakes up,” said Wall.

Ruby said, “You know, that’s what life is all about. When we come into this world, we should always leave, leave it a better place than the way we found it. That’s, that’s, that’s my thing in life. I want to leave Plainview better than what it was when I came into the world.”

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