Raissa Galitzin, a homemaker and volunteer who survived the German occupation of France during World War II, died of stroke complications June 23 at Sinai Hospital. The Roland Park resident was 87.
Born Raissa Mikhailovna Antipoff in Kohlta-Jarva, Estonia, she was the daughter of Russian parents who had fled during the Bolshevik Revolution. She moved with them to the Alsace-Lorraine region of France, where she was educated.
During World War II, she was ordered by German government officials to leave school and work in a textile mill. She later returned home to care for her mother, but was ordered to operate a gantry crane in a steel mill. She refused, claiming she was afraid of heights. She was sent to work in the mill's lab.
She lost a brother, a member of the French Resistance, in a concentration camp and she never heard from another brother who returned to Russia with her mother.
She relocated to Paris at the time of the Battle of the Bulge and worked for a dentist. While there, she met her future husband, Leon Lev Galitzin IV, a member of the Russian nobility. They sailed aboard the SS DeGrasse and settled in Baltimore where her husband's sister, Titiana King, was living and was married to Edward S. King, director of the Walters Art Museum.
"My mother learned English listening to soap operas on the radio," said her son, Miichel Galitzin of Baltimore. "While never relinquishing her Russian heritage, she immersed herself in the American way of life."
Mrs. Galitzin volunteered for many years at the old Rosewood Hospital Center. She worked at the YWCA International Center and was a fan of the Colts, Orioles and Baltimore Clippers. She enjoyed cooking and baking.
A memorial service is planned for later this summer.
In addition to her son, survivors include another son, Leon Lev Galitzin V of Rehoboth Beach, Del.; and four grandchildren. Her husband of 29 years died in 1975.Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times