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Rose Ann 'Rosie' Ruffalo (nee: Brusha)

Rose Ann 'Rosie' Ruffalo (nee: Brusha)

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April 12, 1929 – April 26, 2021

RACINE — Rose A. Ruffalo, age 92, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, April 26, 2021 at her residence. The bright light of the pink super moon guided her grand entrance to heaven. Rose was born in Racine on April 12, 1929, the youngest of nine children of the late Oscar and Christine Brusha.

She was raised and spent her entire life in Racine. On April 29, 1950 she was married to William Ruffalo and they enjoyed 67 years together until his passing on September 26, 2017.

Rose was a fantastic cook and spent many years doing the cooking at Brusha’s Club, which was owned by her brothers Christie and Oscar. Family and friends enjoyed her talents on Mondays with spaghetti dinner at her home. Everyone who came cherished not only the food but the great sense of family and inclusion she exhibited. She truly was happiest with her family around her.

Rose was a longstanding member of Roma Lodge Vittoria Colonna. In her younger years, Rose spent many evenings square dancing with the Circle 8 Club. She wintered for quite a few years in Apache Junction, Arizona, and never met a casino she did not like. A visit to Potowotami was a “therapy” session, win or lose. She enjoyed playing cards, and especially liked to remind you when she was winning. Her sense of humor was contagious. Through trying times, she very quietly proved her strength and resiliency without complaint.

Rose is survived by her children: Gail Widmar, Robin (Fred) Schmidt, and William (Billy) Ruffalo, Jr. (Kathy Puma); her grandchildren, Kelly Crenshaw, Ben Crenshaw, both of Racine, Matt (Kate) Schmidt of Shorewood, WI, Mike (Katie) Schmidt of Elm Grove, WI, Brandon (Khara) Schmidt of Tampa, FL, and Lisa Wilkerson of Mt. Juliet, TN; her great grandchildren: Aubree Cascio, Delainee Dominguez, Ella, Hans, Bennett, Lauren, Mason and Cole Schmidt, Anthony, Isaiah, Julia, Halle, and Kainoa Wilkerson; her great-great granddaughter Harper Trumpulis.

She is further survived by her sisters-in-law: Rose Biagioni of Berkely, IL and Julie Ruffalo of Racine; many nieces, nephews, relatives, and good friends; dear friends Dave and Romie Gallo.

Rose was preceded in death by her brothers and sisters: Katie (John) Oronato, Frank (Francis) Brusha, Sam Brusha, Dorothy (Henry) Geisler, Christina Rice, Oscar (Lucille) Brusha, Ann Brusha, and Christie (Phyllis) Brusha; brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law: Carmella Ruffalo, Charles (Mary) Ruffalo, James (Rose) Ruffalo, George (Susie) Ruffalo, Sammy (Virginia) Ruffalo, Carmella (John) Liddi, Susie (Elliot) Bloomquist, Louie (Bernice) Ruffalo, Irene Ruffalo, Mary (Nello) Copen, Frank (Betty) Ruffalo, Irene (Frank) Kreplan, Josephine (Oliver) Twist, Mamie (Ector) DeLuca, and Emil Ruffalo.

Rose was the heart of our family. We’re really going to miss her.

Private services will be held at Sacred Heart Church on Tuesday, May 4, 2021. In lieu of flowers, memorials to Sacred Heart Catholic Church are suggested.

We would like to extend special thanks to the staff at Parkview Gardens and Compassus Hospice for their wonderful care and support for Rose.


803 MAIN ST. RACINE, WI 53403

(262) 634-7888

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