Rita Forsmann, 80, Cottonwood

Sunday, February 15, 2004

Rita Forsmann, 80, died Friday, Feb. 13, 2004, at Grangeville Health and Rehabilitation Center.

Rita was born in Ferdinand Jan. 8, 1924, to Alysious and Calista Uhlorn. She attended school in Ferdinand and graduated as valedictorian when she was only 16 years old.

Rita married Mark Forsmann June 30, 1943. They made their home on their farm just south of Cottonwood. There they raised five children and numerous foster children. Rita was devoted to her family. She was a wonderful wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother.

Rita was very involved in and an active leader of her religious community. She was very instrumental in providing many years of beautiful choir music for St. Mary's Parish.

In addition, she was a member and officer of the Christian Mothers Society, the Hospital Guild, the Idaho Council of Catholic Women and most notably, the Catholic Daughters of America where she held local and state offices. She was the state regent for four years.

Rita was also a strong proponent of Catholic schools. She was responsible for organizing many fund-raising activities for St. Gertrude's Academy and St. Joseph's School.

She and Mark were the organizers of the very first Academy Day, an event that continued until the school closed in 1971, bringing together all of the local parishes. Rita also served as a teacher and religious education coordinator for the Prairie Released Time Program.

Rita was an avid singer. Over the years, she belonged to the Camas Choristers, the Cottonwood Community Choir and was actively involved in the Community Concert Association. She loved entertaining, singing, playing the piano, reading and sewing. She passed these talents on to her children and grandchildren.

She is survived by her husband, Mark of Cottonwood, to whom she was married for 60 years; and by her children, Gary and Marilyn Forsmann of Grangeville, Joan and Ralph Dufresne of Auburn, Wash., Marcie and Tom Beckman of Boise, Mariel Herrin of Spokane and Mike and Cari Forsmann of Boise; 13 grandchildren; and 21 great-grandchildren. She is also survived by her brothers and sisters, Cletus and Peg Uhlorn, Edna Ruhoff, Irma and Don Tacke, Gerald and Joanne Uhlorn, Jane and Don Hoene, Vern and Peg Uhlorn, Maurus and Karen Uhlorn, Sally and Ralph Terhaar and Merna Gehring, all of the Camas Prairie, and Sister Angela Uhlorn and Sister Cecile Marie Uhlorn of the Monastery of St. Gertrude.

The vigil service and rosary is at 7 p.m. Monday, and the funeral Mass is at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday. Both will be celebrated by Father Meinrad Schallberger at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Cottonwood.

Memorials or donations may be made to the Monastery of St. Gertrude or the Alzheimer's Association.

Uhlorn Funeral Home of Cottonwood is in charge of arrangements

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