OUR STORY IN STONE
"As I help my Customers leave their legacy for generations to come, I am reminded that I am also leaving a legacy. When I look at the beautiful memorials crafted by my grandfather, great-grandfather, uncle and great-great uncle, I know that the monuments I create must endure the test of time... Not just for your family but for mine." (Phil Ruff)
Sudbury Memorial Works has been owned and operated by the Ruff Family since 1930, however our story stretches back even further than that. Phil Ruff, the current owner, is the fourth generation of Ruffs to run the business but family history shows that at least two previous generations made quality monuments in England before moving to Sudbury.
An accomplished memorial craftsman, Charlie Gunstone, Phil's Great-great Uncle, came to Sudbury after WWI and took employment with a local monument company. He soon met Norman Ruff, Phil's Great Grandfather. Together they spent the next decade crafting monuments. During this time Norman met, fell in love with and married Charlie's sister Winifred. In 1930 Norman went out on his own and founded Sudbury Memorial Works.
Norman's eldest son, Paul joined the business in 1945 and soon after married his long time sweetheart, Rae Lariviere. A year later they celebrated the birth of their first child, Karen. Paul became a partner in the business in 1960 and succeeded his father in 1965. Paul devoted himself to his family and Sudbury Memorial Works. He became an internationally recognized, award winning designer and craftsman, and served the memorial industry as president of monument builders associations provincially, nationally and internationally. Paul passed his knowledge and craftmanship to many employees over the years, most of all to his son Paul Jr., daughter Karen and his grandson Phil. Paul Jr. ran a very successful monument business in Southern Ontario and acted as a second mentor to nephew Phil. In 1988, Karen moved her family back to Sudbury to work with her father. She became manager and in 1994, owner of Sudbury Memorial Works. Paul Sr. has been gradually retiring ever since. Phil grew up in the business, making and designing monuments. For the past decade, Phil has been preparing to succeed his mother and live up to his proud heritage.
Today, Sudbury Memorial Works is run by Phil and his wonderful wife Yvonne. You can often find one of their three children helping out and learning the business first hand.
Phil's mission is to create meaningful memorials that will last throughout generations, so that your descendants can know who and where they came from.
453 Arnley St. circa 1940