May 30, 2023 at 5:57 p.m.
Rita Marie Hiltner, 99, of Freeport, passed away peacefully with her family at her side May 23, 2023, at home in Freeport.
A Memorial Mass of Christian Burial was May 27 at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Freeport with the Rev. Daniel Walz officiating. Inurnment was in the parish cemetery.
Rita Marie Rose was born in Melrose, the daughter and youngest child of Herman Rose and Theresia Henrietta Benolken. Rita was a long-time resident of Freeport.
Rita was a member of the Sacred Heart Parish, the Christian Mothers and the secretary of the local court of the Woman’s Catholic Order of Foresters for more than 60 years. She was also a member of the Young at Heart Club, the Senior Citizens Club, the Melrose VFW Auxiliary and the Albany Legion Auxiliary.
Before and in the early years of her marriage to Edwin, Rita worked at the Freeport State Bank, and she helped there in the summers after her children were born. After her children left home, she worked as a cook at Charlie’s Cafe in Freeport.
Rita enjoyed camping, walking, bowling, ice skating and swimming. She enjoyed getting together with family and friends, playing cards, going for drives in the country and going to the casino. She loved watching the birds and squirrels at the feeders in her yard. Everyone looked forward to getting a pair of the slippers she knitted. Rita and Ed traveled together to Canada, Mexico, Germany, France and Switzerland.
Rita was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Edwin Hiltner; her brothers, Frank (Eleanor Spaeth), John (Christine Rau) and Sylvester (Monica Hiltner); her sisters, Hilda, Elizabeth (Schmidt), Amanda (Zirbes) and Helen (Budde, Eichers); and her son-in-law, Leon Koopmeiners.
Rita is survived by her four children, Mary Ayers (Doug Porteous) of Toronto, Ontario, Peter (Hyon So) of Saint Roberts, Missouri, Susan (Richard Shawley) of Avon, Leon (Tammy Stewart) of Alexandria; and her sister-in-law, Genevieve (Overman) Hiltner. Rita loved and was very proud of her seven grandchildren and her 13 great grandchildren, Karolyn and Curtis Marshall and family, Peter Andrew Hiltner and Kim Stueve, Benjamin and Leeann Spartz Hiltner and family, Robin and Jeff Kremer and family, April and Jodi Huls and family, Nikki and Matt Klohr and family and Josh and Ashley Hiltner and family.
Rita was lovingly cared for the last years of her life by her granddaughter, Nikki, with help from the rest of the family.
Arrangements were made with Patton-Schad Funeral & Cremation Services of Freeport.