Cover photo for Kathleen "Kay" Ruso's Obituary
Kathleen "Kay" Ruso Profile Photo
1935 Kathleen "Kay" 2023

Kathleen "Kay" Ruso

November 29, 1935 — April 16, 2023

Watsonville

Kathleen “Kay” Ruso, 87, passed away surrounded by her family on April 16, 2023 at her home in Watsonville, California after a twelve year journey with Alzheimer’s Disease.

Kay’s parents, Joseph and Mary Fogarty, welcomed her into this world in 1935 in Oakland, California. She spent part of her childhood in St Helena, Ca and then returned to Oakland with her family where she attended Holy Names High School and Holy Names College. She graduated from college with a degree in English Literature and a minor in Drama. She also obtained her teaching credential. Kay met John Ruso, her brother’s college roommate, in 1956 when her brother brought him home for the weekend. That was the beginning of their love story which would lead to a marriage of 63 years. After college and prior to getting married, Kay worked as a stewardess for Pan Am and traveled all over the world for two years. In 1959 she and John were married. They started their family the following year and raised their 3 daughters in La Selva Beach, Ca. They later moved to Yuma, Az and to the Los Angeles area where Kay worked as an elementary school teacher for over 20 years. In 2017, they moved back to Watsonville to be closer to family.

Kay was known to her family and friends as a beautiful person inside and out. She never failed to brighten a room with her warm smile and kind words. She was a wonderful wife, mother, and grandmother. She enjoyed many hobbies such as tennis, skiing, photography, cooking, painting, sewing, and participating in community theater. Kay’s family was everything to her. Her children and grandchildren each remember fondly how she would sing Irish melodies to them with her beautiful voice to help them fall asleep. She and John loved ballroom dancing and excelled at it. They stole the show at every family wedding they attended. They were true soulmates from the time they met. Towards the end, Alzheimer’s had taken away many of Kay’s memories but she always lit up with a smile when John was close and knew his name until the end. Theirs is an eternal love story.

Kay is survived by her husband John Ruso, daughters Julie (Tony) Scurich, Lori Ruso, and Anna Turk as well as her grandchildren Jeff, Megan, and Scott Scurich and Michelle Weiner. She is also survived by her sisters Judy (John) Moore and Marianne (Bill) Mazotti and numerous nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents Joseph and Mary Fogarty and her brother Joe Fogarty.

Private services will take place at a later date. Gifts in memory of Kay can be made to Hospice of Santa Cruz County, 940 Disc Drive, Scotts Valley, CA 95066.

To send flowers to the family in memory of Kathleen "Kay" Ruso, please visit our flower store.

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