Harriett C. Pruski of Camden passed away suddenly at home on Friday, Jan. 27, 2012.

Harriett C. Pruski of Camden passed away suddenly at home on Friday, Jan. 27, 2012.

Harriett was born on Sept. 8, 1921 in Dayton, OH where she was raised and educated.

At the young age of 16 she entered and won not only the regional, but national radio talent competition of Major Bowe's Amateur Hour, who nicknamed her as “The Little Girl with the Big Voice”, which was the predecessor of today’s American Idol.

Upon graduating from Steele High School in 1939 she auditioned and was awarded a full fellowship to Juliard School of Music in New York City. She developed her naturally beautiful voice to become a cularatura soprano performing with the Metropolitan Opera Company during World War II.

Her mastery of five foreign languages placed her among the operetic elite with Roberta Peters and Patrice Munsell. Her forte was the entire Gilbert and Sullivan Repertoire, vocally always being compared to Lilly Pons the French opera star.  Also she was a model for the Powers Modeling Agency in New York.

In April 1944 she married the true and only love of her life, Charles Elliott Pruski who was a first lieutenant in the Army Air Corps stationed at Wright Field in Dayton, OH.

Later in 1959 Charles and Harriett purchased their homestead “Pine Tree Farm” in Rising Sun where they have lived with their two daughters for nearly 55 years.

Harriett was a avid antique collector, enjoyed reading, making superb meals for her family and taking walks on the beaches in Delaware and Cape Cod, MA. Harriett was a life long patron of Spence’s Bazaar and truly enjoyed sports especially Ohio State University and Washington Redskins football, Philadelphia Flyers hockey and professional golf.

She was a former member of the Kent County Theater Guild, The Dover Century Club, The Rising Sun Community Club, The Dover Air Force Base Officer's Wives Club, The Antique Automobile Club of America and The Historical Vintage Car Club of Delaware.

Throughout her life everyone she met recognized her positive attitude, that contagious smile, an amazing sparky personality and those beautiful colorful berets her trademark. No matter what she was always ready to “get up and go” and do her best. How she will be missed by all.

Harriett was preceded in death by her father Orville Dearth on Dec. 7 194,1 her mother Edith Dearth on Jan. 5, 1984 and her life long love, husband Charles on June 8, 1999.

She is survived by her two daughters Harriett Pruski-Gately of Camden and Patrice Pruski-Williams of Harrington, also one grandson James Williams of Harrington.

 Friends may call at Trader Funeral Home, 12 Lotus Street, Dover, Wednesday  evening Feb. 1 from 5 to 7 p.m.

Funeral Mass will be held on Thursday, Feb. 2 at 10:30 a.m. at Trader Funeral Home.

Internment to follow at Odd Fellows Cemetery Camden.

Letters of condolences may be sent to www.delmarvaobits.com or traderfh@aol.com.