Rita Thomas, age 93, of LaMoure, ND, passed away February 28, 2013, at St. Rose Care Center, LaMoure, ND, under the care of Hospice of the Red River Valley.
Rita was born October 3, 1919 at Minneapolis, Minnesota to Peter and Agnes (Conry) Gleesing. Rita began her education at the country school in Independence, ND and moved with her family to LaMoure, ND while in elementary school. Rita graduated from LaMoure High School in 1937, and was united in marriage to Philip Thomas on January 20, 1940 at Mandan, North Dakota. She worked at the LaMoure County Courthouse until the birth of her children. The Thomas’ owned the Candy Store Restaurant in LaMoure in partnership with Walter Thomas until 1956. Rita was employed with the Farmers Home Administration in LaMoure for five years, and had worked in the LaMoure County Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service, as Head Program Clerk, retiring in 1980 after almost 30 years. Philip Thomas passed away on August 10, 1986 and Rita continued to reside in LaMoure up until her death at the St. Rose Care Center.
She was an active member of the Holy Rosary Catholic Church, the LaMoure County Food Pantry and a volunteer at the nursing home in which she died. Playing golf and bridge were favorite retirement pastimes.
She is survived by her daughter, Mary Kathleen Embertson of Crosslake, MN and her son, Patrick L. Thomas of Marana, AZ. Rita is also survived by her sister Irene Borys, Shoreview, MN. Rita was “Grandma” to two grandsons, two granddaughters, and six great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband Philip, and her brothers Thomas, Harold and Jerome Gleesing.
A prayer service will be held Friday, March 1, 2013 at 5:00 p.m. at the Holy Rosary Catholic Church, LaMoure, ND. Her funeral mass will be Saturday at 11:00 a.m. at the church. Burial will be at the Holy Rosary Catholic Cemetery near LaMoure. In lieu of flowers, the family requests a donation to the LaMoure County Food Pantry, the LaMoure High School Dollars for Scholars scholarship fund, or the donor’s favorite charity.