Ruthven Libby graduated from North Central H.S. in June 1917 at the age of 16. Because of his age, he had to wait a year before enrolling in the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland. In 1922, he graduated third in his class of 700 and was commissioned an ensign in the United States Navy.
As a junior officer, he served on destroyers, including the USS Tennessee. During World War II, he commanded Destroyer squadrons in the Aleutians and in Central Pacific campaigns. He participated in the Wake Island raid and in the capture of the Gilbert Islands. After the war he commanded the heavy cruiser USS Bremerton and served on the staff of the Chief of Naval Operations.
During the Korean War, Vice Admiral Libby commanded a division of heavy cruisers. From 1951-1952, he headed the United States delegation during peace talks at Panmunjom.
During the mid-1950s, he commanded the Atlantic Fleet Battleship-Cruiser Force and served in Naval Operations. Prior to his retirement in 1960, Vice Admiral Libby served as Deputy Chief of Naval Operations and as Commander First Fleet. He passed away in 1986.