Alexandria murder victim Ruthanne Lodato honored by community

Ruthanne Lodato, 59, was shot in February when she answered a knock at her door. Lodato died later at a hospital. (Family of Ruthanne Lodato)

WASHINGTON – It has been almost two months since Alexandria, Va. music teacher Ruthanne Lodato was shot at the front door of her home. While police continue to investigate her death, the community is honoring her legacy.

While investigators still search for the man responsible for killing Lodato in early February, community members are trying to celebrate her life.

Lodato was nominated for an award through the Alexandria Commission for Women. Camille Leverett, chairwoman of the commission, says the women who put her name in were some of Lodato’s former piano students.

“In teaching them the mechanics of a musical piece and overcoming learning a difficult piece of music, it helped the young ladies gain confidence,” Leverett says.

Meanwhile, investigators continue to look for ties between the murders of Lodato, Ron Kirby and Nancy Dunning over the last decade, and former city mayoral candidate Charles Severance.

Severance’s extradition day from Wheeling, W.Va., came and went Monday.

He was served with a warrant from Virginia last week on unrelated gun charges out of Loudoun County. Police have said they want to talk with Severance in connection with the three unsolved homicides.

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