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Carol Bruce, longtime community advocate, named Harford Living Treasure

Aberdeen resident Carol Bruce, left, was named a Harford Living Treasure during the Jan. 7 meeting of the Harford County Council.
Aberdeen resident Carol Bruce, left, was named a Harford Living Treasure during the Jan. 7 meeting of the Harford County Council.(Curtis Beulah/Provided Photo / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

Aberdeen resident Carol Pitt Bruce, who has been involved in multiple community projects and organizations for a number of years, was named a Harford Living Treasure by the County Council this month.

Bruce, 79, was surrounded by family and friends as she accepted the honor during the Jan. 7 council meeting.

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“First, [I am] giving honor to God and to all of my family and friends that are here,” she said.

Bruce is a former member of the Harford County Board of Elections and is currently vice president of the board for the nonprofit Havre de Grace Colored School Foundation. The foundation is working to refurbish the former Havre de Grace Colored School on Alliance Street as museum and cultural center, celebrating the history of the former school that served African-American students when schools were segregated in Harford County during the first part of the 20th Century.

Council President Patrick Vincenti, who has worked with Bruce on a number of community projects for about six years, described her as “a tireless warrior” for Harford County children, recreational sports, the county’s senior center in Aberdeen as well as the Hosanna School Museum in Darlington. The Hosanna School was established in the 1860s after the Civil War to educate African-American children recently freed from slavery.

“I do appreciate all you do and what you represent, so thank you,” Vincenti told Bruce.

Bruce retired from Aberdeen Proving Ground in 2006. She and her husband of 47 years, Don, have three children, all of whom served in the U.S. military. They have 12 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren, and “they are anxiously expecting two more,” council Vice President Joe Woods said as he read a proclamation honoring Bruce.

Councilman Curtis Beulah thanked Bruce for “for being very active in the community, very involved” and lauded her for raising three children who served in the military.

“So thank you, thank you, thank you,” Beulah said.

Bruce is a graduate of the Havre de Grace Consolidated School — now Roye-Williams Elementary School in the Oakington area between Aberdeen and Havre de Grace — which was open from 1950 until schools were desegregated in 1965.

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Bruce said her mother and cousin attended the Colored School in the City of Havre de Grace. She thanked friends, as well as the County Council and county government, for their support of the school museum project — she noted Vincenti has donated a duck decoy to support foundation fundraisers.

“It’s just in my blood to be here and to live in Harford County, in Aberdeen, and just to be a part of all the things that happen in this county,” Bruce said.

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