Laura Ann Mercanti passed away peacefully on Friday, May 24, 2019, at Morningside House of Ellicott City. Laura will be deeply missed and forever remembered by her two sons, Gus Edward and Edmund Paul Mercanti, two granddaughters, Jessica Estrogano and Rebecca Skerry, great-granddaughter, Hannah Estrogano, and numerous loving nieces and nephews, cousins and friends. Laura was born September 1, 1931 in Albert Lea, Minnesota, the youngest of nine children born to Anne (Ane) Knudsen Nielsen and Emmanuel K. A. Nielsen. Her parents were born in Denmark and immigrated to the United States prior to World War I – they met on a ship bound for America.Family was the foundation of her life, beginning with her childhood in southern Minnesota and her poignant memories of a close knit family growing up on a farm in near Albert Lea during the Depression and war years. Her family was generous and sharing, and her parents would bring the less fortunate, even whole families, into their home for long periods of time. She married Dr. Enrico P. Mercanti in 1950. A forty year resident of the Downs on the Severn in Annapolis, Laura served as Welcome Hostess and as Secretary to the Board of Directors of the Downs. She served as President and as chairman of several committees of the Severn Town Club, a local civic and charitable organization. She was selected as the Outstanding Leader for the State in 1988 by the Maryland Federation of Women’s Clubs. An honor graduate of Prince George’s Community College specializing in Speech Communications, she continued her education at the University of Maryland. She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, Enrico P. Mercanti, granddaughter Nicole Benning Mercanti, three sisters, Mona Johnson, Una Arnbal and Betty Porter, five brothers, George, Adolf, Earl, Reginald and Arnold (Barney), and one half-brother, Jens Peter Nielsen. Friends are invited to celebrate Laura's life on Thursday, May 30, 2019 at 11:30 am until her service begins at 1 pm at the Kalas Funeral Home and Crematory, 2973 Solomons Island Rd., Edgewater. Interment to follow at Maryland's Veterans Cemetery, Crownsville. Lieu of flowers, Memorial contributions may be made to the SPCA in recognition of her love for her beloved poodles over the years, the American Heart Association, or the charity of choice. Condolences may be given under the memories and tribute tab.