It is with great sadness in our hearts that we say goodbye to our wife, mother, grandmother, sister, and friend, Johanna Emilie Rittau.
The family of Johanna (Hanni), 79, of Burriss, Ont., announces her sudden passing at La Verendrye General Hospital on Wednesday, Dec. 2, 2009 with her loving family at her side.
Johanna was born in Duisberg-Hamborn, Germany on June 20, 1930 to the late Wilhelm and Maria Vögele.
As a young woman, Johanna apprenticed as a tailor, receiving her papers at the age of 19. She volunteered her time with the Catholic Church, particularly with the church youth groups, always there to help those in need.
Her love of music brought her to the stage, where she played the zither and also sang with the choir.
Johanna’s passions in life were primarily her family. We will always remember her zest for life, always putting her pride and passion into everything that she did.
Her kitchen was never without the sweet aroma of something good baking in the oven. If it was not that, it was something delicious simmering on the stove.
She loved looking after her family, cooking, baking, sewing, gardening, reading, and playing board games. She also adored strolling around the flower gardens of her home that Guenther so lovingly tended to.
Her sense of humour always brought a smile to everyone and helped bring joy into our lives. She will be sadly missed by all of those whom she loved.
Johanna was united in marriage to Guenther on June 5, 1955 and they emigrated from city life in Germany with their infant son, Ludger, in 1957 as newlyweds with the dream of some day purchasing a farm so they might raise their family in a rural setting.
After working in various mining towns, they moved to Atwood in Rainy River District in 1963. In February, 1969, Johanna and Guenther, with their growing family, purchased Rittau Farms, a dairy operation located in the Municipality of La Vallee, Township of Burriss, on La Vallee Road North.
In addition to the dairy operations, Johanna and Guenther, with their five children, embarked on several other ventures, including a greenhouse/bedding plant operation, an apiary, and always the huge gardens.
She was predeceased by her sister, Brunhilde Vögele, and brother, Bernhard Vögele.
Married for 54 years, Johanna will be lovingly remembered by her husband and best friend, Guenther Leopold Rittau of Burriss, Ont.
She also is survived by two brothers, Josef (Margitta) Vögele and Kurt (Edelgard) Vögele; five children, Ludger (Carla) Rittau, Jeanette Rittau (Vic), Martin (Adrienne) Rittau, Bernard (Pam) Rittau, and Chris (Marilyn) Rittau; and 11 grandchildren, Tiffany, Sebastien, Gabrielle, Emmeline, Madeline, Levi, Sarah, Caitlin, Annalise, Aaron, and James.
A mass was held Monday, Dec. 7, 2009 at 11 a.m. at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Fort Frances, Ont., with Fr. Francis Pudicherry as celebrant.
Should family and friends so desire, in lieu of flowers, in memoriam donations may be made to a charity of their choice c/o Green Funeral Home, P.O. Box 444, Fort Frances, Ont., P9A 3M8
For now we say goodbye, our beloved Hanni, Mom, Grandma, and let you rest peacefully in the arms of God. We will miss you, and look forward to the day when we see your loving smile once again.
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