Obituary: Rosemarie 'Snuffy' Bray / Company supervisor born to lead

ROSEMARIE 'SNUFFY' BRAY | March 7, 1935 - June 21, 2013

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Fellow workers at The Bell Telephone Co. and friends called Rosemarie Snyder Bray of Shaler "Snuffy;" her husband Glenn and relatives called her "Sis."

"No one called her Rosemarie, except our mother when she was mad at her," said her younger sister, Margaret Thompson, of White Oak.

Whatever people called her, Mrs. Bray always rose to become a natural leader -- whether it was at work or overseeing charity groups or other organizations.

"Before long, she always became the president. That was her personality," said her niece, Carla Thompson, the daughter of Margaret Thompson.

Mrs. Bray, 78, who had surgery for stomach cancer in December and never fully recovered, died Friday at her home.

She was nicknamed "Snuffy" by the neighborhood children she played with as a young girl. "Sis" was a natural name for Margaret Thompson to use for Mrs. Bray because she was 13 years older, but it was used by all family members.

Mrs. Bray retired from Bell (now Verizon) at age 48 after working 30 years, first as a telephone operator and later as a supervisor of telephone operators.

Mrs. Bray also was the captain of Bell's softball team. "She was a pitcher or shortstop, and she fast-pitched," her sister said. "She was marvelous."

She was a past president of the Telephone Pioneers of America, a charity organization (the name was shortened to Pioneers in 2008). Among the projects she was active in was making teddy bears for police to carry in their cars to give to children in distress, her sister said.

After her retirement, Mrs. Bray became active in other social organizations, including the Christian Mothers of All Saints Church, Etna, where she also was an usher. She was a past president of the Ladies Auxiliary of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 9199 and Ladies Auxiliary of VFW District 29 and participated in Project Bundle Up, which provides winter outerwear for disadvantaged children and seniors through the Salvation Army and WTAE-TV.

"She was a leader. After she retired it carried on. She never sat still," Carla Thompson said, adding "She was the rock of our family. She made sure everyone was OK."

Mrs. Bray golfed and bowled, and she and her husband also built a home swimming pool that Carla Thompson said was for her and her sister, Mercedes Haines, now of Stanton Heights.

"My best memory is swimming in her pool," Carla Thompson said.

In addition to her husband, her sister and nieces, Mrs. Bray is survived by other nieces and nephews.

Friends were received Monday at Bock Funeral Home Ltd., Shaler. A Mass is scheduled for 10 a.m. today at All Saints Church, 19 Wilson St., Etna. Burial will be in St. Mary's Cemetery in Shaler in about a week.

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Pohla Smith: or 412-263-1228.


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