Antique Vintage 19

Catherine "Toots" Mae (Zelasko) Pritts

June 22, 1933 ~ June 16, 2023 (age 89) 89 Years Old


Catherine Mae (Toots) Zelasko Pritts, 89 years old, stepped into eternity on June 16, 2023.

She was born in Connellsville, Pennsylvania, to Frank and Mary (Serbo) Zelasko. She graduated from Connellsville High School in 1951 and married her high school sweetheart, Robert (Bob) Milligan Pritts. After his military discharge, Bob & Catherine moved to Findlay, Ohio, for Bob to pursue his undergraduate degree. Thus began a life of living in two states that continued for almost 60 years. Initially a homemaker, she later owned and operated antique shops in Pennsylvania and Ohio. Catherine and Bob were also owners of WMBS Radio Station in Uniontown, Pennsylvania.

Catherine was preceded in death by her husband, parents, siblings and in-laws: Florence & Ray Martinowski; Sophie & Wade Faust; Theresa & Emil Kozak; Bridget & George Sanders, Frank & Diane Zelasko and John Free. She is survived by beloved sisters: Stella Free and Mary Louise (Jack) Mullins.

Catherine was a gracious lady and devoted mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother. She is survived by her children: Robert Michael & Kathleen Pritts of Lakeside, Ohio; and Steven & Tracey Pritts of Perrysburg, Ohio. Catherine will be deeply missed by her grandchildren: Jessica (Timothy) Gilmore; Neal (Jennifer) Pritts; Casey (Joseph) Smeltz; Taylor (Nic Hernandez) Pritts; and Joseph Pritts. She was also blessed with 6 great-grandchildren: Victoria & Catherine Gilmore; Nolan & Colin Pritts; and Jackson & Stella Smeltz. Neighbors Kevin & Sheila Hutchins and their daughters, Kaira & Neika, were also close to her heart.

Catherine cherished friends especially her “Zebulon neighborhood ladies” and dear friends, Grace McCauslin and Florence Bailey. She was a fierce champion of higher education and the University of Findlay where she supported scholarship programs. 

Throughout her life Catherine provided a wonderful example of serving others. She was known for her hospitality both in Columbus and ‘back in the mountains’ at her cabin. There were never too many people that she couldn’t find another chair at the table, another plate full of food. Catherine also provided extensive care for friends and relatives over the years, especially Edward & Mary Ellen Dumbauld. Her countless, selfless acts will always be remembered.

Known by family as Toots or Tootsie, she was a blue-eyed beauty that her husband called, “his Polish Princess.” Catherine was an avid collector of antiques and, when shopping for any item, thrilled to find a bargain. At Christmas and on birthdays, family members would look for that orange discount sticker on their gift so that she could proudly say, “That was 50% off!” Catherine loved having her home filled with laughter and music. She was a graceful dancer whether it was polka or waltz or swing. Bob was her lifetime partner on the dance floor; they were magic in each other’s arms. 

Catherine’s friends and family were blessed to watch her live life to the full. Her faith in God was deep and abiding and carried her through life’s peaks and valleys.

A funeral mass at will be held at 10:00am on Friday, July 14, 2023, at St. Raymond of the Mountains, Donegal, PA. Graveside services to follow. Donations can be made in Catherine’s name to Nationwide Children’s Hospital ( or the Wounded Warrior Project (

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