On Sunday, March 22nd, 2020, Rita Elizabeth Reilly, loving mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, and friend, passed away peacefully at the age of 94 due to natural causes.
God blessed the world on October 26th, 1925, when Rita was born in Fort Wayne, Indiana to Cletus and Agnes Meehan. She grew up a hardworking and intelligent child. In 1947 she received her bachelor’s degree in teaching from Nazareth College in Kalamazoo, Michigan. After receiving her degree, Rita began working for the State Department, teaching English for those whose first language was Spanish. In the early 1950’s Rita moved to Spain to continue her work the state department. It was there that she met her husband John. Following their meeting, they moved back to the U.S. and began a life together. They married on August 20th, 1955 and lived a long and happy life together. Rita received her master’s degree in Spanish from Mexico City College and later got her second master’s degree for bilingual/multicultural education from Immaculata University. Rita and John settled down in Berwyn, PA where they raised their five beautiful children. After settling down in Berwyn, Rita got a job in Tredyffrin Easttown school district as a Spanish, French, Latin, and Language Arts teacher until her retirement in 1993.
Rita was a kind-hearted woman that loved to help others. The doors to her home were always open. Throughout her life she was very involved with her faith. Rita loved to volunteer for St. Monica’s Parish helping with bible studies, cleaning albs, and acting as a Eucharistic Minister. Rita loved the arts and was an avid reader. She volunteered at her local library to encourage reading among everyone. She was a very active person and loved to explore new places. Civics were also very important to her and she volunteered at the polling stations for every election. She believed in making this country the best it could be and advocated for the rights of others. Some would say she was ahead of her time in that respect. When she wasn’t travelling in Central America, she was exploring the streets of her home with friends and family. Rita was known for her intelligence, kindness, open-heart, and her devotion to her family.
Rita was preceded in death by her father, Cletus, her mother, Agnes, her brothers, Mike and Father Pat, and her husband, John. She is survived by her five children, Kathleen Reilly, John Reilly (Lorraine), Sheila Reilly, Mary Small, and Tim Reilly (Amy), her eleven grandchildren, Steven, April, JJ, Daniel, Cameron, Kelly, Tim, John, Sean, Kevin, and Kaitlyn, her five great-grandchildren, Finley, Noah, Liam, Michael, and Travis, and several nieces and nephews.
The memorial date and time is still to be determined.
In lieu of flowers, the family is asking to send donations to St. Monica’s Parish, 635 First Avenue, Berwyn PA 19312, https://saintmonicachurch.org/.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Rita Elizabeth (Meehan) Reilly, please visit our floral store.
St. Monica Parish
635 First Avenue, Berwyn PA 19312