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RICH, Rita Ann (Fichera) 90, of Medford passed away peacefully Wed., March 19, 2014 She is survived by & was the loving wife of 68 yrs to Joseph C.; devoted mother to her sons Joseph M. & his wife Marie of Maryland, James and & his partner Edward, Anthony & his husband Sam, and to her daughter Janet & her husband Ted; grandmother to Janine, Terri, & Matt and great-grandmother to Brianna, Ryan, Kasey Rose, and Matthew Maryland. Born & raised in Somerville to Sicilian parents, Benedetto & Antonia Fichera, Rita as a young girl was know to jump barrels while ice-skating in Foss park; horseback ride in the Fells of Medford; and, during WWII, travel New England with her father as he worked his marble & terrazzo business and to volunteer as a candy striper at Lawrence Memorial Hospital. She was childhood sweetheart and then young bride to Joe upon his return from the South Pacific as they drove the Old Road to the cape with Mom at the wheel to their Hyannis honeymoon cottage. Rita was an active parishioner at St. Polycarp's in Somerville and then, with the family moving to Medford, at St. Joseph's. She was steadfast in the rearing of her children. Mom took delight in swimming, being by the sea, and having a room with a view and so their second Honeymoon found Rita & Joe sailing aboard the Italian liner, the Michelangelo, to Italy & Sicily for one glorious month (the Gowns, the Dancing, the Glamour!). Rita returned to college in her sixties, was recognized with a Truman Scholarship nomination, and earned her degree from U.Mass. Boston. her family took delight in her role in the local Medford production of "Gypsy" with a dazzling portrayal of the Stripper Electra adorned with lights and little else. Mom loved a meal out, her cup of tea & Chocolates, but most of all her family. She stood by her husband & her kids through thick & thin. Principessa plus pain in the butt rolled into one 90 lb package of Sicilian feistiness Rita will be in our hearts forever. One of a kind Mom. Buona Notte, Dormi Bene. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the National Breast Cancer Fnd. or to the M.S.P.C.A./Angell-Boston Relatives and friends invited Funeral from the Gaffey Funeral Home, 43 High St., Medford Square, MEDFORD, on Tuesday at 9:30 am followed by a Mass of Christian Burial held in Saint Joseph's Church Medford at 10:30 am. Visiting hours Monday from 4 pm to 8 pm. Interment Oak Grove Cemetery Medford.
Published in The Boston Globe on Mar. 23, 2014
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