Rita Rose A. Ruark, 81, secretary

October 03, 2005

Rita Rose A. Ruark, a longtime executive secretary of the American Cancer Society, died of cancer Sept. 26 at her Timonium home. She was 81.

Born Rita Rose Sleater in St. Louis, she came to Baltimore in 1940. Two years later, she graduated from Seton High School.

Mrs. Ruark worked as an executive secretary for the American Cancer Society from the mid-1970s until she retired in 1984. She also served as a field services coordinator for the organization.

In 1950 she married Eric Smith Ruark, who died in 2001.

Before her marriage, Mrs. Ruark worked as a private secretary to the vice president and treasurer of the American Credit Indemnity Co. of New York in Maryland. She also worked part-time for Baltimore County government for several years.

She enjoyed traveling, reading, gardening and cooking.

A memorial Mass will be offered at 11 a.m. Friday at St. Joseph Roman Catholic Church, 101 Church Lane, Cockeysville.

Survivors include two daughters, Linda Ann Wight of Monterey, Calif., and Mary Ellen Bates of Fallston; a brother, Louis M. Sleater Jr. of Timonium; and four grandchildren.

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