Adele Ossani Smoot
Native of Italy
Adele Maria Ossani Smoot, who planted fig trees at her White Marsh home in recognition of her Italian childhood in Naples, died Monday of liver and kidney failure at Greater Baltimore Medical Center. She was 77.
She moved to Northeast Baltimore in 1946 as the war bride of Joseph R. Smoot, then an Army master sergeant. She met him in Italy during World War II when she was a clerk for the Allied Expeditionary Forces. Mr. Smoot, a founder and chief executive officer of Guardian Moving & Storage Co. Inc., died in 1982.
Mrs. Smoot grew up in the Vomero section of Naples, where she received her early education. After studying for two years at the University of Naples, she transferred to the Conservatory of Naples in the late 1930s, when she aspired to be a concert pianist.
"She loved her fig trees and flowers. In Italy, the fig tree is to Neapolitans what the apple is to Americans," said a son, Eugene W. Smoot of Perry Hall. "She never forgot her heritage, of which she was very proud.
"She returned to Italy often to visit her family and enjoyed sailing aboard the Italian Line luxury liners Michelangelo, Raffaello and the Leonardo da Vinci, and sometimes would sit down at the ship's piano and play Mozart," said the son.
Mrs. Smoot also was known for her Italian cooking.
"She made such dishes as pasta e fagioli and lasagna. You name it and she made it. She also enjoyed watching Italian movies starring Gina Lollobrigida and Sophia Loren, which reminded her of home," Mr. Smoot said.
A Mass of Christian burial was to be offered at 10 a.m. today at St. Joseph Roman Catholic Church, 8420 Belair Road, Fullerton, where she was a member.
Mrs. Smoot also is survived by two other sons, Mario S. Smoot of Fallston and Walter R. Smoot of Perry Hall; two daughters, Camilla R. Smoot and Cassandra C. Mohr, both of White Marsh; a sister, Anna Barra of Naples; and nine grandchildren.
Robert A. Ruff Jr., a retired insurance company executive, died Tuesday of coronary failure at St. Agnes Hospital.
Mr. Ruff, 72, lived in Catonsville, where he was born.
He retired in 1985 as vice president of Poor, Bowen, Bartlett and Kennedy Inc., now known as American Phoenix, where he worked for nearly 40 years. He had started his insurance career with New Amsterdam Casualty Insurance Co.
He was a 1940 graduate of Catonsville High School and earned his bachelor's degree in 1944 from Washington College in Chestertown, where he won the B. Fox Scholar-Athlete Award.
During World War II, he served with the 20th Armored Division in Germany.
Mr. Ruff was an accomplished landscape painter and bridge player. He liked to hunt, fish and play golf as a member of the Rolling Road Country Club.
Services were to be held at 10 a.m. today at Salem Lutheran Church, 905 Frederick Road, Catonsville.
He is survived by his college sweetheart, the former Elizabeth "Betty" Blackway, whom he married in 1947; a son, Robert Andrew Ruff III of Westminster; two daughters, Judith R. Stocks of Springfield, Va., and Barbara Sybert of New Park, Pa.; a sister, Elinor L. Reich of Catonsville; and six grandchildren.
Memorial donations may be made to the American Heart Association, P.O. Box 17025, Baltimore 21203.
Garian Gensemer, a model and receptionist, died Tuesday of liver and kidney failure at the University of Maryland Medical Center. He was 42.
Mr. Gensemer of Mount Vernon had been a receptionist at Neal's The Hair Studio for several years before a medical disability in 1993. Earlier, he worked in the retail video industry and was a model in Europe for seven years.
He was born in Denver, Pa., and grew up in Birmingham, Ala. He was a 1970 graduate of the Alabama School of Fine Arts. He moved to Baltimore in 1990.
Mr. Gensemer collected Marilyn Monroe memorabilia.
No services were planned.
He is survived by three brothers, Ronald Gensemer of Rock Hall, S.C., Terry Gensemer and Wallace Gensemer, both of Birmingham; several nieces and nephews; and John Sizemore and Suzanne Rechy, friends in Baltimore.