Rita McDermott Reis, 91, of Perry, Iowa, formerly of Jefferson, died Tuesday, July 25, 2017 at the Rowley Memorial Masonic Home in Perry. Lewy Body Disease contributed to her failing health.
Mass of the Resurrection was held Friday, July 28, 2017 at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Jefferson, Iowa with Fr. Jeff Schleisman as celebrant. Wayne Ahern gave the reading. Gift bearers were Rachel Ahern, Sarah Goodchild and Megan Romens. Servers were Donivan Tighe and Sullivan Tighe. The music was by Lois Last and Amy Roberts. Serving as casket bearers were Ryan Tighe, David Tighe, Patrick McDermott, Matt Dirkx, Chris Dirkx, Michael Dirkx, Megan Romens, Kacie Purl, Sarah Goodchild, Rachel Ahern and Ethan Ahern. Interment was at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Greene County, Iowa.
Rita (McDermott) Reis was born October 10, 1925 in Bayard, Iowa to Arthur and Julia (Watts) Moylan. Rita graduated from Bayard High School and attended St. Mary’s College in Omaha for two years. Following college, Rita travelled to California to work and live with her brother, John, for a short time. She returned to Iowa where she worked in Des Moines, Jefferson, and for the last 20 years of her career, Perry at Oscar Mayer before retiring in 1989.
Rita married John “Art” McDermott on March 29, 1948. To this union five children were born: Mary, Monica, Margaret, Mark and Michele. They were married for 41 years. During their last years together, Rita was caretaker as Art’s health failed. Together they enjoyed camping and their grandchildren who visited often.
Following Art’s death in 1990, Rita married Laverne Reis and continued to enjoy camping with Good Sam’s Camp Club with their many friends. They lived in Greenfield where Rita was active in St. John’s Catholic Church.
After Laverne passed away, Rita moved to Jefferson residing at the Gardens Assisted Living. As a member of St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Jefferson for many years, Rita attended mass regularly. Her faith was an important part of her life.
Crafting, cross-stitch, knitting, sewing, quilting – Rita could do it all. Her family has been the recipient of many beautiful quilts and afghans. Chocolate chip cookies were a staple at Rita’s house. She passed her baking skills and love of chocolate on to her family as well.
Survivors include five children: Mary (Bill) Tighe of Bagley, Monica (LaVern) Dirkx of Carroll, Margaret Knosby of Perry, Mark (Kristy) McDermott of Jamaica and Michele (Wayne) Ahern of Solon, Iowa; 11 grandchildren, 15 great-grandchildren; sister, Kathleen (Tom) Ferguson of Greensboro, N.C.; many other relatives and friends.
Preceding her in death were her parents; husbands, John Arthur McDermott and LaVerne Reis; brother, John Moylan; sisters, Regina Ryan and Madonna Hagen; granddaughter, Molly Ahern and son-in-law, Tim Knosby.
The family requests memorials be made to HCI Hospice Care Services, 610 10th Street, Perry, IA 50220.
Slininger-Schroeder Funeral Home, Jefferson. 515-386-2171.