Ruth was born in Dundee, the daughter of William B. Wilson, a flax merchant. She attended Dundee High School, then  went to University College (St Andrews University) where she gained a BSc and  to Advanced Medical School Dundee, graduating MB ChB in 1907. She went on to post graduate study in Vienna & Dresden, then in 1910 she set off to India where she was a lecturer at Women’s Christian Medical College, Ludhiana in the Punjab for six years, going on to become Professor of Surgery at Lady Hardinge Medical College in Delhi.

In 1917 Ruth married. C.B.Young, thereafter doing voluntary work, chiefly in maternity and child welfare, until 1925 when she became personal assistant to Chief Medical Officer, Women’s Medical Service of India.

In 1928 she was awarded the M.B.E. In 1931 she became director of the Maternity & Child Welfare Bureau of the Indian Red Cross Society, and from1936 to 1940 Principal of Lady Hardinge Medical College.

A year later she was awarded the C.B.E. In 1943 Ruth went to Ethiopia to advise the Ethiopian Women’s Work Association on welfare work. Finally, in 1951, she retired. She kept journals of her journeying in India, the East, Ethiopia and North America which are in Dundee University archive.

She died just a month or so before her hundredth birthday.