RITA B. BARWILER, 89, of New Haven, died on Tuesday, Oct. 9, 2012, at New Haven Care & Rehabilitation surrounded by her loving family. Born in New Haven, she was the daughter of the late Joseph and Frances (nee. Schaefer) Buchtman. “The stars in her heavenly crown will be many. Rita was a dutiful daughter, sister, wife, mother, homemaker, governess, caregiver, teacher, and citizen. She was a loving grandmother and friend to everyone.” She was a member of St. John the Baptist Catholic Church, Eucharist Minister, Stephen Ministries, Rosary Society, Altar Sodality, Legion of Mary, and Harvest House. Rita’s humility and Christian spirit enabled her to go into many homes and lend a helping hand to the sick and elderly. Thirty years as a Confraternity of Christian Doctrine teacher sharing the joys of the catholic faith with the children of St. John’s. “In the heart of a child is the Kingdom of God.” She was devoted to our Blessed Mother and the rosary. Active in the New Haven community as a Democratic Precinct Vice Committeeman and water meter reader, she was also a volunteer with the New Haven Food & Clothing Bank, PTA volunteer in Court, and Let Happiness Ring Program. She was a past president and life member of American Legion Auxiliary Post 330, New Haven. She was proud to achieve her G.E.D. at the age of 71. She is survived by her children, Rose Rita Sovine, Regina DeCoursey, Robert (Pam Brooks) Barwiler, Ramona (Ronald) Harber, and R. Tracy (Ronnie) Posey; siblings, Catherine Bratcher, and Joseph Buchtman; grandchildren, Arthur (Nadine) Putt, K. Tina (Doug) Stearley, Karen Napier, Kathleen (Mark) Milkowski, Kimberly Lentz, Kevin (Kelly) DeCoursey, Robert (Melanie) Barwiler II, Arianne (Travis) Grubbs, Robert (Tara) Harber, Renae (Mark Worrel) Harber, Ryan Harber, Rita Harber, Michael Martinez, and Angela Martinez; 30 great-grandchildren; and 10 great-great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by husband of 35 years, Raymond Barwiler, in 1977; grandson, Richard Raymond DeCoursey; great-great-grandson, Parker Huber; infant brothers, John and Michael Buchtman; sons-in-law, Lawrence Sovine and Dennis DeCoursey; and daughter-in-law, Lynn Barwiler. Mass of Christian Burial is 10 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 13, 2012, at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church, 943 Powers St., New Haven, with calling one hour prior. The Father James Seculoff officiating. Calling also from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 12, 2012, at E. Harper & Son Funeral Home, 740 St. Rd. 930 E., New Haven, with a rosary 3:30 p.m. and American Legion Auxiliary service at 7:30 p.m. Burial in the church cemetery. Preferred memorials are to Masses or St. John’s Catholic School. To share online condolences please visit www.harperfuneralhome.com

POSTED: 10/10/12 at 6:38 am. FILED UNDER: Obits