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Rita O. (Demick)'s Story

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Rita O. (Demick) Jannine , 96, of Gloucester passed away on Tuesday October 31, 2017 in Seacoast Nursing and Rehabilitation Center following a lengthy illness.
Born July 4, 1921, at her family’s farmhouse on Lebanon Hill, Southbridge. She is the daughter of the late Joseph Demick and Angelina (Dorval) Demick. She was a graduate of Southbridge High School 1937. She was born on a farm and schooled in the town of Southbridge during the great depression, that which gave Rita her strong will and work ethic.
Rita worked at Harvey Wells supporting the war effort, 1939 to 1945. She married Michael Jannine Sr. Dec 1945, after he returned from serving in Africa and Italy. She received many letters from him and packages of the photos he took and developed during his service years there.
Post WWII, still the wife of an enlisted man, they traveled extensively by car and railway, when they were able, touching their feet in more than half of the United States. They were stationed at the Elmendorf Air Force base in Anchorage Alaska 1949 to 1951 (a place she labeled as Gods gift to the world),then Ellsworth Air Force base, South Dakota 1951 to 1952.
They returned to Southbridge where they resided and began their family, then settling at their lake home in Webster in 1957.
After Michael Sr.‘s passing, Rita began working for the School Department at the St. Ann’s School, she then worked Town of Webster, food services department, working there for 13 years. Having summers off meant she spent her days at the beach, where she could be found knitting her latest project and watching over the neighborhoods many children as they swam and played.
Rita also spent many years volunteering in her children’s activities. She served in the Cub Scouts of America for some 20 years, achieving the highest award; the Award of Merit. Rita began as Assistant den coach leader, she then went on to become Den leader, Cub Master, Unit Commissioner, she also served as Pow-Wow Staff, and the Ad Alteri Dei instructor. Rita was the first woman Cubmaster in the Mohegan council, receiving the Cub training award, the Scouters Key award, and the Commissioners Arrowhead award. Rita received the Bronze Pelican award in 1976. She was also both a Brownie Leader and a Girl Scout leader, a charter member of the Sacred Heart Parish Council, and sat on numerous committees.
Rita retired from work for the school department in the Town of Webster in 1983, moving in 1994, to Gloucester to be closer to her only grandson and daughter.
Her last years were spent in the care of the Bayside “angels” at Seacoast Nursing home.
She leaves two children, Michael of Tennessee, and Marie and her husband, Gregory of Gloucester and her favorite grandson, Justin, of Rowley. She also leaves nieces, especially Rachel, Sandy, and nephew, Billy, and many great-nieces and nephews as well as great great-nieces and nephews.
She was predeceased by her parents and her siblings including four brothers, William, Doria, Joseph and Levi, and a beloved sister, Lorraine. She was also predeceased by her son, Joseph William.
At the time of our particular sunset our things and our accomplishment’s don’t really matter a great deal. But the care and clarity with which we have loved one another will ring with vitality of the great gift of life we have been for each other.
Rita’s visiting hours will be in the Pike-Newhall Funeral Home, 61 Middle St., Gloucester, on Tuesday evening, November 7, 2017 from 4 to 7 p.m. Her Funeral Mass will be celebrated at Holy Family Parish in St. Ann’s Church, Pleasant St. Gloucester on Wednesday, November 8, 2017 at 10:30 a.m. Relatives and friends are respectfully invited. Interment will be Thursday, in St. George Cemetery, Southbridge. In lieu of flowers, it is her wish to have money donated to the disabled American veterans …….to make them whole. Or to the friends of Seacoast to continue their programs. For online condolences and register book please visit www.pikenewhall.com.
Published on  November 3, 2017
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