Cover photo for Rose Ellen Ruzzi's Obituary
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1932 Rose Ellen Ruzzi 2023

Rose Ellen Ruzzi

August 18, 1932 — August 23, 2023


Rose Ellen Ruzzi (nee Lico) entered eternal life on August 23, 2023.  Her beloved husband, Joseph, preceded her into eternal life in January 2023.  She is survived by her children: Joseph Jr. (the late Betsy Brown Ruzzi), Louis (Cathie), Mary (Al) Montgomery, and Laura (Jeff) Cooper.  She was also a proud grandmother to Melissa (Clay), Kristin (Cole), Joseph (Christine), Michael, Thomas, Laura, Rosie (Harry), Sara, Ellie, John, Jeffrey, and great-grandmother to Charlie and Alex. Relatives and friends may visit with the family on Friday, August 25th, from 4:00PM to 7:00 PM at Beall Funeral Home, 6512 NW Crain Highway, Bowie, Maryland 20715.  Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Saturday, August 26th  at 10:00 AM at Holy Rosary Church, 595 3rd Street NW, Washington, DC 20001. 

Above all else, Rose devoted her life to her family.  Born in a small village, Donnici, in Calabria, Italy, as an only child, it was always Rose’s dream to be the matriarch of a large family. God blessed her to see this dream fulfilled — four children, eleven grandchildren, two great-grandchildren, and another “great” blessing expected to arrive in September. 

Her greatest joy was always to be surrounded by family, usually at a dining-room table piled high with spectacular Italian dishes that she prepared from scratch.  Rose was highly regarded as an extraordinary homemaker, cook, and baker in the community. Her children’s friends were delighted to be invited to a Ruzzi celebration, where a seemingly endless stream of homemade pizzas flowed from the oven, followed by a slice of her exquisite Red Velvet cake for dessert.

Like her late husband, Joe, Rose was a true servant of her community.  She chaired the Spaghetti Dinner fundraiser for many years at the family’s home parish, Holy Family, in Hillcrest Heights. She also volunteered and co-chaired the annual Lasagna Dinner to benefit Holy Rosary Church in Washington.  Rose was a lifelong member of the Sodality of our Lady (served as Prefect many times) and volunteered many years on committees for the Altar Society, the St. Gabriel Society, the Italian Festival, among many other charitable works and activities.

Rose was married for 65 years to Joe – their love and devotion to one another served as an exemplar to their children and extended family.  Theirs was a true immigrant love story – Rose’s dad (Joe Lico) was a family friend and boarder of the Ruzzi family in DC, in the years leading up to, and during WWII.  In 1947, Joe was finally able to unite his family and bring his wife, Marietta, and teenage daughter, Rose, to the United States from southern Italy. As a result of the family friendship, fourteen-year-old Rose met young Joe Ruzzi when she and her mother arrived in DC from Calabria.  Born two days apart but thousands of miles away from each other, they were destined to be together. 

Rose and Joe raised their four children in Hillcrest Heights.  She was happy to share her pride in her children’s accomplishments, along with those of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.  Her love and commitment to her family never wavered.

Rose and Joe moved from Bowie to Brightview Riverwalk in Crofton in 2021.  The Brightview community welcomed the loving couple with open arms, and Rose enjoyed the multitude of social activities, like many sessions of bingo and a daily Sprite with her friends at Brightview’s Happy Hour gatherings.  Her great love for her family and friends, along with her easy smile and good nature will live forever in the hearts of all who loved her.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Betsy Brown Ruzzi Education Fund of the Community Fund of Anne Arundel County, which is dedicated to education research in memory of Rose and Joe’s much-loved daughter-in-law, the late Betsy Brown Ruzzi.  Information about the Fund may be found at: Donations to the BBR Fund may be made directly via this link:




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Service Schedule

Past Services


Friday, August 25, 2023

4:00 - 7:00 pm (Eastern time)

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Funeral Service

Saturday, August 26, 2023

Starts at 10:00 am (Eastern time)

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