Theodore ‘Ted’ John Rucci, 36


Theodore John (Ted) Rucci, beloved son of Debbie and Joe Rucci, passed away on November 24 at age 36. 

Theodore John (Ted) Rucci

Born on April 16, 1984, Ted attended West School and Saxe Middle School in New Canaan, and graduated from King Low Heywood Thomas School (KLHT) in Stamford where he made lifelong friends.  There he was captain of the cross country track team and a constant in every theater production.  He played leading roles in The Sound of Music, Great Expectations and in The Glass Menagerie, which he also directed.  Ted went on to Fordham University, where he acted in myriad productions and directed Harold Pinter’s play, The Birthday Party.  He graduated in 2006 with a dual major in acting and directing.  

Ted reluctantly gave up the theater to pursue a career in the legal field, building on his part time work as a paralegal at Rucci Law Group. He earned a Juris Doctorate degree from Quinnipiac Law School and was admitted to the CT bar in 2015. He settled in West Haven and worked in several law firms in the area. 

Ted remained passionate about theater, and counted the outdoors, technology, and animals, among other things he loved.  He taught the family’s contrary rescue dog more than a dozen tricks.  He loved to hike and would take hours-long walks every day. He had a curious mind, read constantly, and had an enviable store of both trivial and profound knowledge. Ted made DIY look easy—repairing his car via YouTube video; teaching his older siblings and parents about new technology; sharing his enthusiasm and recommendations for the latest binge-worthy streaming series.  

Energetic, creative, loving, and brilliant, Ted was the dear youngest child of a tight knit family.  He doted on his nieces and nephew.  He will be deeply missed by his surviving family: his parents, Debbie and Joe; his brothers, David and Josh; sister, Marysue; sisters-in-law, Barbara and Kierstie; nieces, Grace, Ava, Lila, Mae, and Thea; and nephew, Nate.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you direct donations to the Cathy Mishkin scholarship fund at the King School (link), honoring the legendary KLHT teacher who so inspired Ted; or to Americares Free Clinics (link) , an organization Ted esteemed, and was introduced to by his father.  

A livestream memorial Mass will be held at 11 a.m. on Dec. 11, accessible here. An in-person memorial service will be planned for a later date.

65 thoughts on “Theodore ‘Ted’ John Rucci, 36

    • Thank you Charlie and Linda. “Uncle” Charlie was an annual Santa to Ted and his siblings. Your kindness then and now is appreciated.

  1. To the Rucci family we are most saddened by the news, we will keep you in our prayers
    Sarah, Peter and Margaret Stein

  2. I am so very sorry for this awful news. My thoughts and prayers are with you both. Having just lost my wonderful son, Bud, this last February, I know what you are going through now.

    • Dear Sheila,
      Thank you for reaching out and we are so sorry for your loss. Buddy was a lovely young man who we remember with fondness. How blessed we both were in our sons.

  3. Debbie and Joe and all the Rucci family, I am profoundly sad to hear of the loss of your son Ted. I remember him as an energetic teenager when he’d pop into our book group meeting to say hi. It’s a loss no family should have bear and my heartfelt sympathy and prayers to you all that your good memories and love will help comfort you in your grief.

  4. Al and I are so sad for your loss. Such a terrible tragedy, we will offer mass and prayers for Ted and all of you for peace and consolation…

  5. We are saddened to hear of this loss. Our Almighty Father gives us the strength and wisdom to endure. I’m certain you will cherish his memory. God bless.

  6. Our deepest condolences to all the Rucci family. Please know that all our prayers are for you Josh and Kierstie and all your loved ones . Our hearts are with you

  7. Dear Debbie and Joe,
    Words cannot express the deep sadness we feel for all of you. Hoping your deep faith can sustain this time of terrible grief. Our prayers are with you

    Kristan and John Mountain

    • Dear Kristan and John,
      Thank you for your words and your prayers. They bring light into the darkness as does the belief that Ted is in God’s loving embrace.

  8. My heart goes out to the whole beautiful Rucci family. I remember babysitting Teddy many times when he was a toddler. He was a super sweetheart and a gorgeous child— smart and curious. Thinking of you all in this difficult time. All my love!

    • Dear Ruth,
      That he was also a handful you don’t mention! But how we love the shared memories – you were an excellent baby sitter – thank you for writing.

  9. Dear Joe and Debbie, dear Rucci Family! Our deepest condolences, that is a hearth breaking loss. Life will be so different now for all of you. Best wishes.

  10. I loved working with Ted on his theatrical shows at KLHT. Always bright, energetic and creative, the theatre was a wonderful outlet for him to discover and explore. I am so saddened by this news and send the whole family my sincere condolences.

    • Dear Melody,
      Thank you for all the opportunities you gave Ted to practice his craft and grow in it. Being in one of your productions was always a high for him.

  11. Rob and I are extremely sad with the news of Ted leaving us.
    He was an amazing person. Very caring. Smart and a very good friend.
    He will definitely be missed. I will be praying that you God gives you the comfort your heart needs in this very difficult time.

    • Dear Vivian,
      Ted so loved his friendship with you and Rob. The deep grief that our family feels I know is matched by that of his friends. I wish we could be together. Thank you for writing.

  12. I’m sorry I didn’t know Ted, but I know how fiercely the Ruccis love each other, and how much everyone clearly loves your family. I hope that shared strength carries you forward and through this dark time. Thinking of you all.

    • Dear Amanda,
      Thank you for your lovely words and for being such a good friend to Marysue. How blessed she – and we – are in our friends.

  13. My deepest sympathy and condolences to David, Barbara and the entire Rucci family.
    Thinking of you during this difficult time.
    Gillian DePalo

  14. Deepest condolences from the entire Palmer family. We are deeply saddened to learn of your tragic loss. You are in our prayers.
    Anne & Howard

  15. Dear Rucci Family: I am so sad to hear the news of Ted’s passing. During his years at King School I had the pleasure of teaching him and also helping with his stellar production of “The Glass Menagerie.” He threw himself wholeheartedly into directing a magnificent cast, while effortlessly playing the lead role himself. He was a hard-working, thoughtful, insightful, erudite, funny, caring young man, and he will be deeply missed. My sincere condolences, Helen Kweskin

    • How good you are to write. Ted always craved your praise. He and we are very grateful for it and for the way you stretched him in the classroom. He was blessed in his KLHT teachers. Thank you.

  16. Dear Debbie and Joe,
    My most heartfelt condolences to you and your family . I am sending my prayers and hope that you may find the strength to get through this dark time.

  17. Dear Debbie & Joe,
    My deepest sympathies are with you at this difficult time! Although I didn’t know Ted, I do know as a parent to lose a child is most likely one of the most difficult trials for a parent to go through. I pray that God will wrap His loving arms around you and give you peace.
    Karen Bennett

  18. Dear Debbie and Joe,
    Our hearts break for you.
    We are so so sorry, and wish there were words of comfort that would help ,
    We pray that God will guide you through your sorrow .
    sincerely ,
    Audrey and Jim

    • How good you are to write. Ted was a joy and we are struggling to understand life without him. but take comfort in the outreach of our friends. Thank you.

  19. Debbie and Joe,
    We remember when Teddy, the bonus baby, was born and how much joy he provided. Words cannot express how sorry we are for your loss.
    With love,
    Betsy and Jim Barton

    • Ah yes – you knew us and him “when” and remember the joy we all felt with his arrival. Thank you dear Betsy and Jim for remembering that memory.

  20. Dear Debbie and Joe,
    I am so sad for you. The loss of a child is devastating.
    I hope your faith will get you through this tragedy.

  21. Dear Debbie and Joe
    I am so sorry to hear of your heartbreaking loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you both.
    Dale Carbonier

  22. I was so saddened to read of the loss of Ted. I remember him in my PE classes at West. He was always so full of life, always sporting a smile with a twinkle in his eyes, and energetic in a good way ….a really cute little elementary school boy. My heart goes out to the family during this most difficult time. May memories help sustain you. RIP Teddy.

    • Dear Kathy,
      Thank you for reaching out – Ted’s PE time- though PE was not his forte – was blessed with great teachers. Thank you for being one of thewm.

  23. To the Rucci family, such heartbreaking news, I’m so sorry for your loss. May peace and serenity find you and my thoughts are with you.

  24. Dear Debbie, Joe and family,
    I was heartbroken to hear the news about Ted. We shared such wonderful memories from his time at KLHT and NYU. He always brought his wonderful smile, his amazing talent and his joie de vivre wherever he went. We shared many trips together, a favorite was our trip to West Virginia with Habitat for Humanity. You brought a gift into this world and he left a loving legacy. I was honored to know him and work with him. May God hold you in the palm of his hand as you grieve. We hold you up in our hearts and prayers.
    With fondest affection,
    Cathy Mishkin

  25. Mr and Mrs Rucci

    I am so sorry to hear this news. I have such fond memories at your house hanging out with Dave and goofing around with Teddy. Thinking of you both and sending all of my love.

  26. I wanted to pass along Coach Don Usher and his wife Elaine’s condolences as well as mine. Prayers to your family.
    The Usher Family

  27. Jonathan and I were deeply shocked and saddened by the news of Ted’s passing. What a bright light he was! I will reach out privately, but I wanted to thank you here for sharing his obituary notice and his virtual memorial service. Both were beautifully rendered and fitting tributes to a remarkable young man. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all.

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