On Friday, September 8th 2023 we lost our beloved mother, Rita Kay White.
Mom was born in Dickinson, North Dakota on December 24th 1945 to Donald and Irene Hedman.
Two more girls were to follow: sisters Gloria Jean and Linda Lou. The three beautiful Hedman girls, as they were known.
The family lived in Scranton, North Dakota on their farm, until moving to Snohomish, Washington in 1957. Mom attended school in Snohomish.
In 1962 Mom met and married Rich White. Together they had four children. Kayleen, Rick, Brian and David.
Mom and Dad moved their family from Snohomish to Marysville in 1974. That’s where she stayed for the next 48 years. She loved Marysville.
Mom lived for her family. She was so proud of her children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. She was at the hospital when each of her grandchildren were born. She never forgot a birthday. She attended baseball games, cheer competitions, basketball and soccer games. Anything the kids were involved in, Mom was there. She was the best Grandma. (Gramma Rita.)
Mom loved yard and garage sales. Her and her sister Gloria spent many hours searching for treasures. Sister Linda would join them frequently as well.
Rita and her daughter, Kayleen, also loved estate sales. They would get up very early to be first in line at a sale. They would gather all their treasures and sell on Ebay. They had so much fun watching those auctions!
Mom loved flowers. Any kind.
The last few years her best times were going to the garden center at any store and looking at all of the flowers. Especially Home Depot and The CoOp in Marysville.
She would watch YouTube videos for hints and tips on how to care for them. This information she passed on to her daughter. Kayleen spent many hours tending to Mom’s flowers, learning to care for them, so that Rita had beautiful flowers outside her window all summer.
She loved her hummingbirds who she named Henry and Sue. We hung a red glass feeder in front of the window so Mom could enjoy watching them.
Mom was a collector of many things. Anyone who knew her from ” back in the day” knows that she collected owl items. At one point she had well over 500 owl pictures, knick-knacks, calendars, anything you can think of had an owl on it. She collected dolls, barbies, Hallmark ornaments, beanie babies, bracelets. So much more!
Mom worked in the hotel business for 20 yrs. She loved to interact with the guests. She had the perfect personality for her position. Always smiling, patient, and loved people. She loved to tell the story of meeting Gene Hackman. He just walked in the front door and asked for a room. Mom asked if he was Mr. Hackman. He said, I sure am. Would you like a picture together? He stayed at the hotel twice. Mom always talked about what a nice man he was. She treasured that picture.
Speaking of pictures…Our family referred to Mom as the paparazzi. Every family gathering you would find Rita with her disposable 35mm camera chasing us all down for pictures. We complained for years. We are so thankful now to have boxes of memories.
Mom will be forever missed by her children. Daughter Kayleen Sherman, Rick (Erin) White, Brian White and her baby, David White. Her sister that she loved so much Gloria (John) Lundeberg Her grandchildren that she adored ; Brandon (Serita) Schaut, Derrick Sherman, Lacy (Anthony) Graves. Riley, Perry White, Kayleen White Bryson (Amy) White, Gabriel White, Nik White Jake White, Jordan (Tyler) White. Her great grandchildren that she was so proud of Isaak and Marissa Schaut & Ellie and Aiden Graves. Her niece Michelle Stansbury, and nephew Monte Lundeberg Special niece Angela Houle Swift who she was very close with, and her boys, Tolice, Cristian and Elijah. Her former spouse, Richard White. Friends for 60 years. Special friend, Carla Marie and her children, our brothers, Aaron (Sara) McCabe, Ryan (Brittany) White. She also leaves behind her precious kitty, Girlie. She lived with momma for 16yrs. Mom loved her so much.
Rita was preceded in death by her Daddy, Donald M. Hedman Mother, Irene I Taylor, and her baby sister, Linda L. Houle.
Every day is hard but Christmas Eve, Mom’s birthday, will be especially tough . She loved having a Christmas birthday.
Oh Mom, it is so hard to live without you. The memories are bittersweet right now. We are numb. It’s hard to believe you are gone.
My Mom apologized for leaving us , when she knew she was. Always thinking about her kids.
We love you and will miss you every day that we are left behind.
Thank you for being such a good Mom.