Lydia Ruas, a Bronx native and early Co-Op City resident until her death, passed away peacefully surrounded by family on Monday March 5, 2018 at Cedar Manor Rehabilitation and Nursing Home in Ossining, NY. She was 86.
Lydia was born on October 8, 1931, to Alejandro and Guadalupe Sanchez. She graduated from School of Industrial Arts and began her first job shortly thereafter with the Reuben H. Donnelly Company in Manhattan, NY. After raising her 2 children Lydia returned to work as a bank teller and had a long career as an international teller with Bank Leumi New York until she retired in 1992.
When Lydia became ill with breast cancer in 1977 she vowed, if she survived, to do all she could for breast cancer research. With a group of friends and other breast cancer survivors, she founded the Einstein Cancer Fund, a non-profit group that arranged trips, outings and social gatherings to raise awareness and funding for organizations such as Cancer Care Inc., Memorial Sloane Kettering and other hospitals, treatment and cancer research centers. It became her life’s work and mission up to just months before her passing. Lydia was 40-year breast cancer survivor until it had returned recently, which led to her death.
Lydia was a loving mother, a caring neighbor and friend to many. She is survived by her two children, Albert and Laura; her grandson Albert III, and her brothers, Raul Sanchez and Ruben Sanchez. She was predeceased by her brother Alex Sanchez.
A family service was held at Ferncliff Cemetery with a Memorial service to be held in the Spring in Co-Op City, date TBD. Family asks in lieu of flowers that donations be made to a cancer charity of donor’s choice.