Rita Marie Dodson
December 12, 1948 ‒ December 18, 2019
COLUMBUS: Rita Marie Dodson Meredith-Knabe, born on December 12, 1948, died Wednesday, December 18, 2019, taking her last breath in the presence of her sister, daughter, and son-in-law. She was preceded in death by her parents James and Mary Jane Dodson. Rita is survived by her sister Susie Lory, daughter Nicole Knabe-Schaefer and son-in-law Daniel Schaefer and his extended family, grandson Samuel, nieces Chara Lory-Mays and Brianne Lory, and great nephews Kaden, Kamren, and Gavin.
Rita moved from Cleveland to Mansfield in 1957 upon her father’s transfer to the newly opened General Motors Plant in Ontario. She graduated from St. Peter’s High School in 1967 and earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Education from Bowling Green State University in 1971. Rita studied French for 6 months in Tours, France.
She was a superb high school French and English teacher having taught at Lexington, St. Peter’s, and Lucas. Rita coordinated numerous high school French class excursions to Paris and Quebec. She would often say, “the students were better listeners than the adult chaperones.” Rita impacted many lives as a teacher, mentor, and friend over the years. Having last taught in 1989, she continued to receive cards from her former students as recent as last week’s birthday!
Beginning in early November, Rita developed respiratory disease which progressed and led to an extended stay at Westerville St. Anne’s Hospital where she received excellent care and finished her last days. For the past six years, Rita has lived with her daughter, son-in-law, and their son in Columbus, Ohio where she attended Saints Augustine and Gabriel Catholic Church. She enjoyed reading to her grandson Sam and being a part of her daughter’s life, who was her pride and joy. Prior to that, Rita lived in Mansfield, Ohio where she attended Resurrection Parish in Lexington, Ohio.
Rita’s family will receive friends today, Friday, December 20, 2019 from 6pm-8pm in the Marion Avenue Snyder Funeral Home. Visitation will continue on Saturday from 9am-9:30am in the vestibule at Resurrection Parish (2600 Lexington Avenue, Mansfield, Ohio 44904) where funeral Mass services will begin at 9:30am. Father Joseph Bay will officiate. Burial will follow in Mansfield Catholic Cemetery.
Her family welcomes prayers and flowers for Rita.
Online condolences to the family may be made by visiting: SnyderFuneralHomes.com
“Now ask the beasts to teach you, and the birds of the air to tell you; or the reptiles on the earth to instruct you, and the fish of the sea to inform you. Which of all these does not know that the hand of God has done this? In His hand is the soul of every living thing, and the life breath of all mankind.” (Job 12:7-10)