Rose Vassallo, bookkeeper

Rose G. Vassallo, a retired construction firm bookkeeper, died of complications of renal failure Thursday at the Ellicott City Health and Rehabilitation Center. She was 84 and lived in Ellicott City.

Born Rose Grace Mignone in Brooklyn, N.Y., she was the daughter of Anthony Mignone, who owned a construction business, and Constance Filipelli Mignone, a dressmaker. She attended New York City public schools and worked in accounting at the Van Heusen shirt company in New York City.

She moved to Baltimore and later settled in Westminster with her husband, Charles Louis "Chuck" Vassallo. She became the head bookkeeper in her family's construction business, Mignone Construction, which built homes in Baltimore County. She later was a bookkeeper for the Westminster Leggett store and at Town and Country Furniture until she retired in 1993.

She and her husband founded a scholarship fund at Carroll Community College.

The couple traveled throughout the United States and to Sicily.

Mrs. Vassallo was honored by the Howard County Fire Department for saving her husband's life by administering CPR after he suffered a heart attack. The award said she kept him alive until medics arrived.

Mrs. Vassallo enjoyed reading mysteries and solving crossword puzzles. She watched Orioles and Ravens games on television. She also cared for sick family members.

"My mother had compassion. She liked to care for the sick," said her son, John M. Vassallo of Ellicott City. "She was also an excellent cook and liked nothing better than to make a pot of her own homemade tomato sauce and her own pasta."

A Mass of Christian burial will be held at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Roman Catholic Church of the Resurrection, 3175 Paulskirk Drive in Ellicott City, where she was a member.

In addition to her son, survivors include a brother, Anthony Mignone of New York; two sisters, Nancy Soviero of New York and Constance Bannister of Baltimore; three grandchildren; and a great-grandson. Her husband of 53 years died in 2003.

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