Obituary: Ruth Kraft

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Ruth Kraft died in her sleep May 9, surrounded by family, after a long battle with cancer. She was 86 years old.

Kraft was born in Hoboken, N.J. on Feb. 17, 1927 to Florence and Solomon Nathanson. She went to work at the age of 13 doing various jobs, including working at the telephone company, stuffing envelopes and sewing cummerbunds, as well as working at Playbill magazine in New York.

On Aug. 25, 1962, Kraft married Gilman Kraft at the Plaza Hotel in New York City. The family moved to Los Angeles in 1966, where the couple started Performing Arts magazine. The Krafts also invested in real estate in Beverly Hills and Malibu over the years.

Kraft loved singing and music, and was also an active volunteer, working for the Golden Key Foundation, The Westside Center for Independent Living and the Los Angeles Philharmonic.

Kraft is survived by her sons, Frank Pelosa of Eureka, Calif. and Richard Kraft of Malibu; her daughters, Susan Holley of Los Angeles and Dana Kraft Kitaj of Westwood; as well as 10 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband, Gilman Kraft, who died in 1999.

A celebration of Kraft’s life took place May 14 in Beverly Hills.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Westside Center for Independent Living, the Tower Cancer Foundation and/or The Heart Fund.