Floral 29

Irma S. Rilling

October 26, 1926 ~ August 27, 2023 (age 96) 96 Years Old
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Irma was born at the family home in Trumbull, Connecticut, the sixth of seven children of Auguste and Lucinda (Pauquette) Smith. Her mother died when she was three years-old due to complications during childbirth; the child did not survive.

Her father was a machinist, who carried out her mother’s wishes that he wed her best friend, Emilia, so the children would have a mother to care for them. He and Emilia had one son.

Life was extremely hard during the Great Depression and Irma’s family struggled to survive. Her father took whatever job he could find to provide for the children and like so many families, everyone had to pitch-in and help. Each child had chores to do. The older ones cared for the younger ones. They raised fruits, vegetables and chickens for their consumption. Extras were either preserved for their use or sold to raise money for essentials. These hard times strengthened the bonds between brothers and sisters.

Irma did well in school, as did her siblings. She spent her free time reading and exploring the lands around her home, learning about nature, animals, plants and flowers which became a lifelong interest she passed onto her children and grandchildren.

Graduating from Bassick High School in 1944, she did clerical work and worked her way up from bookkeeper to accountant during her career. She retired and enjoyed traveling to Europe and Asia.

Irma was married to George J. Rilling on her twentieth birthday and they had two daughters. George passed away the day after Christmas in 1987 and she never remarried.

A member of Sacred Heart Church since 1959, Irma became a Eucharistic Minister and joined the church choir. She also held the offices of Treasurer and President of the Columbiettes. Her love of music also led her to joining the Singalong Group in the Southbury Senior Center.

Those who knew her or just met her were regaled by some of the poetry that she thought appropriate for the situation at the time. Those who didn’t know her well may be surprised to learn she was a published poet but didn’t like to brag. She wanted to leave people with a smile, not a frown.

Irma sold her home in Southbury in 2021 and moved in with her daughter and son-in-law in Carmel, New York.

She was predeceased by her brother Auguste, sisters; Rita Hildebrand, Rita McCullough, Doris Roller, Genevieve Seminaro, Lucinda Foote, and half-brother Emil Smith.

Irma is survived by her daughters, Rosemarie and her husband, George W. Richards of Jensen Beach, Florida and Theresa Ann and her husband Anthony Sarsorito of Carmel, New York; her granddaughter Christine Marie Caffey and her husband Timothy J. Caffey of Port St. Lucie, Florida; her great grandson Timothy N. Caffey and her great-great- grandson Nathaniel B. Caffey both of Port St. Lucie, Florida and her great granddaughter Tiana Caffey of Orlando, Florida, and her many friends.

Calling hours will be held at the Munson-Lovetere Funeral Home, 235 Main Street North Southbury, CT on Tuesday, September 5, 2023 from 6:00 -8:00 PM. Funeral mass is scheduled at 10:00 AM on Wednesday, September 6, 2023 at Sacred Heart Church, 910 Main Street South Southbury, CT. Burial will follow at Grove Mountain Cemetery in Bridgeport, CT.

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Calling Hours
September 5, 2023

6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Munson-Lovetere Funeral Home
235 Main Street North
Southbury, CT 06488

Mass of Christian Burial
September 6, 2023

10:00 AM
Sacred Heart Catholic Church (Southbury)

September 6, 2023

Mountain Grove Cemetery
2675 North Ave
Bridgeport, CT 06604


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