Maureen Elizabeth Burns Kalafut, 63, of Manchester, passed away peacefully in her sleep on Jan. 5, 2013, while surrounded by family and friends.
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Born in Hartford to the late June Burns, she is survived by her adoring father, Thomas Burns, and her loving husband of 42 years, Roger Kalafut, who will carry Maureen in his heart and in his soul for all the days to come. Left to cherish her memory are her daughter and best friend, Allyson Ruganis; her "son," Brian Ruganis; and her grandchildren, Brennen, Connor, and Mollie. She was predeceased by her sister, Gail Burns-Smith, with whom she is now reunited. Maureen leaves behind her brother, Tom Burns, and his wife, Sue; her sister, Patti Burns; and her special brother-in-law, Tom Smith, and his wife, Nancy. She will be deeply missed by all her nieces and nephews, who were all so important to her, Kerry Smith, and her partner, Rue Landau, David Smith, Emely Larson, and her husband, Steve, Sean Burns, and his fiancée, Julie Anderson; and her great-nephew, Eli Smith-Landau. Maureen also leaves her dear aunt and godmother, Virginia Bouvier; along with several cousins. In addition to her family, Maureen is survived by many "sisters," including her friends, Elaine, Linda, Judy, Cheryl, Rosie, Pat, Carolyn, Rose Marie, and Fran; as well as her godchildren, Renee and David.
Maureen briefly worked at Travelers before dedicating the rest of her life to caregiving for children. While a stay-at-home mom to her own daughter, she was also a caregiver to three wonderful children, Elizabeth, Paul, and David. She found satisfaction in caring for and mentoring these children, and in watching them grow into successful young adults. As a grandmother, Maureen continued her caregiving with her beloved grandchildren, Brennen, Connor, and Mollie, who will always remember their "Grammie" as the one who taught them to count and read, and how to be the best they could be at everything they do.
The family would like to thank Hartford Hospital for the excellent and compassionate care provided to Maureen, especially Kent Stahl, M.D., Kristen Bissell, M.D., and Alison Lane-Reticker, M.D., along with all of the nurses and patient care assistant staff of the Conklin Building, Floors 2 and 6.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Connecticut Sexual Assault Crisis Services, 96 Pitkin St., East Hartford, CT 06108. This organization holds a special meaning to the family.
Family and friends may call at the John F. Tierney Funeral Home, 219 W. Center St., Manchester, on Friday, Jan. 11, from 4 to 8 p.m.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Saturday at 11 a.m. at St. Bridget Church, 80 Main St., Manchester, followed by burial in East Cemetery, Manchester. Those attending are asked to meet directly at church.
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Published in Journal Inquirer from Jan. 9 to Jan. 13, 2013