- Rita Mary Michaud, 90, died Sunday, April 9, 2017, at the Barron Center in Portland, with her beloved children around her. As she had requested, the voice of her late husband, Albert Michaud, was heard, singing hymns recorded at St. Joseph's Church in Old Town, Maine, where Rita and Albert were married many years before.
The daughter of Jane Landry and Bill England, Rita was born on Jan. 19, 1927, on French Island in Old Town. She attended Old Town High School, graduating in 1945; and Husson Business College.
Rita and Albert were married on May 1, 1954. Together they raised eight children, who survive them: John (wife Linda) of High Rolls, NM; Audrey Rolfe (husband John) of Portland; Douglas (partner Angie) of Bangor; Jane Obear (husband Bill) of Whately, Mass.; Bill (wife Cheryl) of Hampden; Amy Adams (husband Ralph) of Portland; Paul, of Portland; and Chris (wife Regina) of High Rolls, NM.
Her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren were the greatest joys in Rita's life. Her grandchildren are Laila (husband Greg) McCaskill; Camden Moriarty; Austin and Anna Michaud; Samantha York; Tristan Rolfe; Ryan and Ben Adams; and Jason, Christopher and Natalie Michaud. Rita was predeceased by a grandson, Brian Michaud.
Her great-grandchildren are Jaxon and Alex York; Simone McCaskill; Zoe Adams, and Naomi Adams.
Rita's devotion to her family was paralleled only by her devotion to her Catholic faith. She taught a course on the Old Testament at John Bapst High School; traveled to Jerusalem and to Medjugorje, Croatia, to deepen her understanding of her faith; and for many years, supported an orphaned Bangladeshi boy being raised by missionaries.
At home, Rita always ensured that religious holidays were grand affairs, beginning with Mass (and special clothes, of course); and celebrated with gifts, food, and joy for everyone. She was a welcoming woman who opened her door to everyone, including tenants on the day rent was due, for coffee and conversation.
Rita was a talented and industrious seamstress who made clothes for her daughters and their dolls, and spent countless hours hand-sewing quilts for her family, who treasure her creations. Births and marriages were happy occasions for which she would make personalized quilts. On her wedding anniversary, Rita cherished the bouquets of spring flowers that Albert and their sons would pick in the woods for her.
As for leisure, shopping was her favorite pastime, especially with her daughters, and especially for others. She loved a good card game, and she and Al spent countless Saturday nights around the table with lifelong close friends Don and Pauline Voteur. The celebration of her 80th birthday, with all her family present, was one of the happiest occasions in Rita's long, rich life.
In January 2008, while walking home from church in the snow, Rita and Al were struck by a car and seriously injured. Bravely and with uncommon grace, they underwent a long healing and rehabilitation process together. Their unending patience was an inspiration to their family and friends.
Rita is also survived by three sisters, Hilda Ouellette, Lena Bouchard, and Carol Ann Ellis; and by her lifelong dear friend and sister-in-law Gloria Thornton of Milford. She was predeceased by two brothers, Ronnie and Bobby England.
The family thanks the staff at the Barron Center for their kind and tireless care for Rita over the past several years.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, April 18, 2017, at Parish of the Resurrection, Holy Family Church, 429 Main St., in Old Town. Friends may call 5-7 p.m., Monday, April 17, 2017, at Birmingham Funeral Home, 438 Main St., Old Town. Immediately following the service, all are invited to the Parish hall for a light luncheon and continued fellowship.
Published on  April 15, 2017