In Memory of





Obituary for Mary Kathleen "Katie" LaFrance

Mary Kathleen “Katie” LaFrance was born on October 30, 1961 in Rockville,
Connecticut. She was a unique soul with a zest for life, who lived to enjoy every occasion
among friends and family. She was a proud and loving wife, mother, sister, aunt, and
friend. She is survived by her husband of 31 years, David Rukakoski of Tolland, CT, son
Andrew Rukakoski and wife Camila of West Hartford, CT, sister Bridget Kirby and
husband Arnold of Tolland, niece Aimee Fortin and husband Larry of Tolland, and
nephew Chaplain Jason Palmer and wife Kirsten of Dunedin, FL.

Noted for her wit and bold personality, she excelled working in creative roles in print
media, and later fostering her love for history working at Old Sturbridge Village. Her
extensive work in print media included roles at The Hartford Courant, The Willimantic
Chronicle, Gamer Publishing, The Norwich Bulletin, and Horseman’s Yankee Pedlar. She
would later start her own business, where she provided remote administrative business
consulting for several years. Amid the Covid-19 pandemic, she also pursued her love for
used clothing by managing an online consignment store with hundreds of sales.

She was passionate about humanity and nature, and expressed great compassion towards
others. She always believed in second chances and redemption, and would often bear the
weight of the world on her shoulders through causes larger than herself. She held a deep
appreciation for art and cinema, thrived for autumn and Halloween, and never shied away
from conversations about religion and politics.

Always a social butterfly, she maintained a large collection of friends and acquaintances
who all meant so much to her. Katie had created and maintained two websites, Hartford
Woman Online and Connecticentric, where she supported the local community. She
managed many Facebook communities for class reunions and community meetups like
East Of The River Friends. She touched so many people in her life, even if it was only for
a short time. She will be sorely missed by many.

Relatives and Friends are welcome to join the family from 4-7 p.m., Tues. July 26, 2022
at the Burke-Fortin Funeral Home, 76 Prospect Street, Rockville, CT. A Mass of
Christian Burial will be at 11:00 a.m., Wednesday, July 27, 2022 at St. Bernard’s Church,
25 St. Bernard’s Terrace, Rockville, CT. Burial will follow at nearby St. Bernard’s
Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Old Sturbridge
Village by visiting their website at For online condolences, please visit: