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Ruth Ragucci


1933 - 2015 Obituary Condolences
Ruth Ragucci Obituary
January 7, 1933 - July 12, 2015 Ruth Ragucci, noted psychiatrist, died July 12 in La Verne, California. Born Ruth Helena Brant, the oldest of four children in Columbus, Ohio, Ruth was first attracted to psychology, but switched to medicine after her father objected to what he called "a feather merchant profession." She was initially rejected ("too young") by the medical school, so she worked a year at Battelle Labs before becoming one of only seven women in her class of 150. She married Bartholomew Ragucci and began a family while still in medical school. They practiced general medicine for eight years in the Cleveland area before going back to school to do residencies in Psychiatry and Dermatology. They had two children, Sam and Cathey, before divorcing in 1970. As a compassionate person and excellent listener, Ruth found her calling in her psychiatric practice, helping a lot of people over nearly 30 years. She was elected president of the Cleveland Psychiatric Society in 1983. Diagnosed in midlife with heart disease, she pursued both conventional and alternative treatments. In 1998 she decided to close the practice and move to Claremont, California to be closer to her children and grandchildren. However, once arrived, she decided that retirement wasn't really for her, saying, "I still feel I have something to contribute" as she studied for and passed the state board exams at age 65. She practiced until stopped by ill health in 2011. Eastern and other spiritual traditions resonated with her, and she attended retreats led by the great Buddhist teacher Thich Nhat Hanh. She also greatly enjoyed sailing and amateur races on Lake Erie, and spent one of her favorite vacations as crew on a classic three-masted Tall Ship. Ruth was very family oriented, moving to Larkpur in Marin County to be close to her daughter who had been diagnosed with breast cancer, and then back south to her final home in Glendora after Cathey died to be near her son Sam, daughter-in-law B�rbara Anne Woods and grandchildren Amanda Woods and Alex Ragucci. She is survived by her sister Mary Ellen Hynes, brother William Brant, son Sam Ragucci and their families.
Published in the Los Angeles Times from Oct. 2 to Oct. 4, 2015
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