Rutiner (Tina) Wooten was born Rutiner Moore on January 12, 1926 in Melville, Louisiana. The second oldest of four children born to Cary and Luttie Moore, Tina was the oldest of a set of twins. After high school, Tina met the lover of her life, Fredrick Eubanks on a train ride from Chicago to New York. The two married and had two children: Fredrick Jr. and Christiner. In 1951, the family moved to Florida to join the rest of the Eubank clan in St. Augustine. In 1957, after the passing of her dear husband Fredrick, Sr., Tina and her children went to Seattle to visit her older brother Freddy, and decided to stay.
In 1967, Tina married Dave “Buttons” Harris, and shortly thereafter, opened her home daycare center and became known as “Mamma Harris”. Tina loved children, and children loved her! During the early years, each morning she would head out in her Ford LTD 10-passenger station wagon and pick up the children from their homes and bring them back to her house where she would care for them until she took them back home in the evening. Children ranged in age from 2 weeks to 10 years old. Their days were spent laughing and playing, singing and dancing, and learning basic home training. Everyone’s favorite lunchtime meal was Mamma Harris’ spaghetti and favorite snack was chocolate cake, which she made for everyone’s birthday. Her favorite time of year was Halloween, when she would decorate the house and dress up as a witch and make her famous witch’s brew.
Tina was an avid gardener and loved to cook, fish and entertain her friends. There was always something cooking in the kitchen. In the summer, she was busy canning and making jelly, and in the fall she made homemade soup with vegetables from her garden. For her social group, the VIP Club, she loved to host the dinner parties and would surprise her friends with Hawaiian or Asian-themed dishes and décor.
Tina loved her family and loved to travel. At least once a year she would either travel to Baton Rouge to visit her baby twin sister Ruby, or she’d head to Florida to visit her former in-laws, Nathan and Violet Eubanks or Georgia (Sister) Eubanks. If for some reason she could not get away to visit them, they came to visit her in Seattle.
In 1985, Tina married A.G. Wooten. The two shared the love for gardening, fishing and traveling. Each November, Mamma Harris would arrange for someone else to watch the children in her daycare and she and Mr. Wooten would load up the van and head to Texas, Louisiana and Florida. They made many stops along the way and always brought back souvenirs.
In 1999, Mamma Harris sold her house and moved to the Foundation House senior living community in Federal Way. Though she had “officially” retired and closed her daycare, she couldn’t resist the call to keep watching one last child, Acton. He was great company to her and she loved to show him off to the other “old folks” (as she called them) at their Wine & Cheese Fridays in the dining hall.
In 2003, Mamma Harris and her beloved Siamese cat, Spikie, moved to Renton with her daughter Christiner where she lived and was cared for until she was called home to the Lord on January 3, 2019, 8 days before her 93rd birthday.
Tina led a very long and full life and was loved by many. Tina is survived by her children, Christiner Eubanks Bush and Fredrick Eubanks, Jr.; her grandchildren Rutiner (Tina) Bush Dunn (Rodney), Bert Bush, Marlon Bush (Hanane) and Frederick Eubanks, III; her great-grandchildren Jordan Bush, Jared Bush, Saabirah Bush and Keshara Simon; and her great-great granddaughter Anabelle.