PHILIP, S.D. (KELO) — Today’s Remarkable Woman is Gayle Rush who has lived in Philip, South Dakota for many years. From helping out the ambulance services and teaching swimming lessons to running a funeral home, Rush continues to be a very involved member in her community.

It’s not everyday you meet someone like Gayle Rush.
Someone who fills up each day helping others… and isn’t about the slow down… even in her 70’s.

“When you are still willing and able to do something and still can think with your mind and use your body, it’s good to do because they need help everywhere,” Rush said.

Rush is originally from Montrose, South Dakota. Her and her husband, Jack, moved to Phillip in 1983 to take over the local funeral home.

“Jack grew up on a farm in Coleman, South Dakota, so we were both from small places and from rural places so yes I think it was quite easy to adjust because we liked it,” Rush said.

A new community but a familiar feel..

“It is a wonderful community, very friendly. Like this morning, I was walking and a man thought I needed help when I was out walking in the dark and he stopped and said I thought you might need help, but that is the kind of community it is,” Rush said.

Since Gayle and her family moved here about 40 years ago, she has been spending many years helping the Phillip community. Whether that was at the local pool, the ambulance services, or here at the school.

“Substitute teaching. I have a degree in sociology and social work. Well, I never used it for anything but I still have the same husband and the same three kids so that was my social work. But getting along with kids as you substitute and getting along with kids during swimming lessons, I am glad I got that degree and that is all I’ve ever used it for,” Rush said.

While Rush says she just loves to stay busy, being involved in her community is about so much more.

She feels it’s important to always lend a helping hand when it is needed.

“The church always needs help. Anytime they need help for singing and alter serving and reading and so I decided that I can do that,” Rush said.

Rush says it’s also important to always be kind…. because you never know what someone is going through.
At the funeral home, she often works with people dealing with grief. Just being someone who listens can be very impactful.

“There is a rewarding feeling. Monetary pay is not what it is all about,” Rush said.

Rush says she enjoys helping the community that has been so kind to her over the years, her daughter says when she isn’t volunteering or working, she loves to dance.

“Yes, we’ve had a very good life out here,” Rush said.

Gayle and Jack’s son, Daniel, has taken over the funeral home. Gayle and her husband continue to work and help out there. The Rush Funeral Home serves areas across the region including Wall, Kadoka, Midland and Murdo.