Rita Louise (Files) Bennett, age 85, died peacefully in the company of her daughter, Wednesday, Feb. 12, at Charlene Manor in Greenfield, MA.
The Guest Book is expired.
Born Jan. 30, 1929 to Fred F. and Ethel M. (Chipman) Files, Rita was raised on a farm on the shore of Thompson Lake in West Poland, ME. It was there she met her husband, Clyde U. Bennett; they were married April of 1948.
Clyde was in the Navy at the time, later in the U.S. Air Force and to paraphrase Rita, it was like acquiring a magic carpet. The rural farm girl never dreamed of living in Casablanca, Morocco, travelling in Spain or even living up and down the eastern seaboard of the USA, but she did. Rita collected the stories.
Rita taught at the Girls Club Head Start and lectured at Greenfield Community College while hosting student teachers in her Head Start classroom. She also taught in the Wendell Elementary School. Rita collected more stories.
Rita served at the South Deerfield Congregational Church in many capacities, including Deacon, Sunday School Superintendent, Moderator and more. She and her husband were energetic members of the church's ""In Betweens"" Community Service Club, through the 1970s. And even more stories.
Rita loved to tell a story, actually lots of stories! She had plenty of material, travels, family, work and church. For decades, Rita shared her life and insights via articles published regularly in the church newsletter.
Her husband, Clyde, (d. 2005), and great-granddaughter, Mia Davies (d. 2001), predeceased Rita.
Her sons, Frederick R. Bennett and wife B.J, Clyde U. ""Ben"" Bennett, Jr. and wife Louise Nunn and her daughter Peggy A. Davies, 6 grandchildren, 8 great-grandchildren, 5 ""absorbed"" great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews survive Rita. Her sister, Marjorie Yurkevicz, also survives Rita.
A Celebration of Life will take place Tuesday, Feb. 25. at 11 a.m. at the South Deerfield Congregational Church, followed by a reception.
There are no calling hours.
In lieu of flowers, please make memorial contributions to Hospice of Franklin County, Inc., 329 Conway St., Suite 2, Greenfield, MA 01301 or South Deerfield Congregational Church, 71 North Main St., South Deerfield, MA 01373
Expressions of Sympathy are available at:
Wrisley Funeral Home
90 Sugarloaf Street
South Deerfield, MA 01373
Published in The Recorder on Feb. 19, 2014