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1938 Mary 2016

Mary Ruffing

October 8, 1938 — October 13, 2016

MARY LOUISE (BARANESKY) RUFFING

Our Mom, Mary Louise Ruffing passed away on October 13, 2016 after a short battle with metastatic lung cancer in Middletown, New York near her home of Monroe, New York.  Mom was born on October 8, 1938 in McKeesport, Pennsylvania.  She attended Clairton High School, in Clairton, Pennsylvania and The College of Notre Dame in Maryland, where she graduated in 1960 with a Math degree and minors in Chemistry and Religious Studies.  Our Mom was one of the first women to be hired by US Steel as an industrial engineer and was considered a pioneer for equality in the workforce.  She met our Dad, Regis, in the summer of 1959 at a dance in McKeesport, PA.  She later married Dad in 1962.  Together, they raised 3 children:  Melinda Ruffing, Marcia (James) Kania, Regis M. (Tonia) Ruffing.  Mom thoroughly embraced being a grandmother.

She retired from US Steel after the birth of her first child and later transitioned to a focus on the computer sciences.  She worked for Rust Engineering in Pittsburgh until our family relocated to Monroe in 1983.  She then worked for Pan American Airways, where she enjoyed taking her family on their first foreign travels.  With her family, she enjoyed many adventures; sliding down the muddy hill of a castle in Ireland, watching her son jump off of a bus in London, getting locked out of hotel room in Italy by her jet-lagged children, and many more.  She also enjoyed traveling to Germany with Dad; Austria and Rome with her daughters and Guatemala.

After leaving PanAm, Mom worked for FootStar as a project manager, where she happily retired in 2002.  After her retirement, Mom fully embraced her “Ferrari” of a sewing machine by quilting and sewing, making curtains, table runners, holiday decorations for her daughters, and participating with Sacred Heart Quilters and Crafters.

She was a member of the Greek Catholic Union, lodge 288 in Clairton and a devout parishioner of Sacred Heart Parish in Monroe.  She also was a participant with the Christian Services of Sacred Heart Parish.

Mom was a wonderful person who cared immensely about her family and took pride in the accomplishments of her children.  She adored her grandchildren and was happy to make doll clothes and matching pajamas, as well as custom doll bedding.  Her focus was on making her family happy and she was willing to try new adventures, many of which appeared on our holiday dinner table.  She always put others first and considered herself last.  She proved to be a leading example for her daughters that women can achieve success in a male-dominated world.  Mom championed her son and was so proud of his accomplishments.  She left many legacies that her children and her grandchildren will follow:  a love of reading, macaroni salad, nut roll, halupki, black olives for Easter dinner, Easter bread and other special Christmas traditions.

She is survived by her husband of 54 years, Regis, who showed great love and tenderness during her illness; her children:  Melinda of Richmond, Virginia, Marcia (James) and their children Casey and Jordan of Peterborough, New Hampshire, Regis (Tonia and her sons, Raymond and Devin) of Highland, New York;  her sister, JoAnn (Joseph) Sharkey of Richmond, Virginia, sisters-in-law, Leota Ruffing, Jean Ruffing and Kathleen (Chick) Yaksick and brother-in-law Ronald Ruffing and many nieces, nephews, great nieces and great nephews.  She was pre-deceased by her parents:  Walter and Mary (Kraynak) Baranesky.

Will will all miss her deeply, but are comforted by the fact that she is now at peace and in her Heavenly home in the arms of our Lord.

Family and friends will be received in the Stephen D. Slater Funeral Home 1701 Route 51, Jefferson Hills, Pennsylvania on Monday, October 17, 2016 from 2 - 4 and 6 - 8 PM.  Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10 AM on Tuesday, October 18, 2016 in St. Michael’s Catholic Church, 101 McLay Drive, Elizabeth, Pennsylvania  15037,

The family kindly requests donations to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

“Though her smile is gone forever and her hand I cannot touch, I still have so many memories of the one I loved so much.  Her memory is now my keepsake which with I’ll never part.  God has her in his keeping, I have her in my heart.  Sadly missed, but never forgotten”.

author unknown


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