Rita L. (Budde) Baker, age 92, of Beaver Dam died on Saturday, October 14, 2023 at Hillside Manor in Beaver Dam.
Visitation for Rita will be at St. Katharine Drexel Catholic Church in Beaver Dam on Friday, October 20, 2023 from 9:30 a.m. to 10:50 a.m. A Mass of Christian Burial will follow at church at 11:00 a.m. with Fr. Will Arnold officiating. Burial will follow at St. Peter Cemetery in Beaver Dam.
Rita was born December 31, 1930 to Anton J. and Adela K. (Haas) Budde in the farm house where she lived for the majority of her life. She attended St. Peter’s Grade School and graduated from Beaver Dam High School in 1948.
After graduation, she assisted her dad with his duties as the treasurer of the Town of Beaver Dam. Each week, they went to Farmers State Bank to collect taxes. The president of the bank was impressed with her work and offered her a job at the bank. That started her career in banking. She remained an employee of that bank as it evolved into Marine Bank, Bank One and Chase Bank. When she retired in 1985, she was Vice President at Chase Bank.
Rita married William (Bill) E. Baker, the love of her life, at St. Peter’s Catholic Church on March 11, 1977. They had a wonderful life together and enjoyed spending time with family and friends. Bill was a farm implement parts salesman for all of Wisconsin and parts of neighboring states. After she retired, Rita joined Bill on the road as his bookkeeper. They enjoyed their many adventures together.
Rita and Bill loved their cottage in Lac du Flambeau, Wisconsin. They spent as much time there as they could and opened their doors to family and friends. Laughter and fun was a given on every visit with story telling, playing cards, telling jokes, and of course, fishing. Rita currently holds the cottage record for the biggest walleye.
Rita enjoyed games and puzzles and could often be seen doing both on her iPad. She was quick to tell a joke and always had a twinkle in her eye. She was kind hearted, fun loving and was adored by her family and friends. She will be deeply missed.
Rita was preceded in death by her parents, her brothers Anthony Jr. (as a child) and James L. Budde, her husband Bill, step son Brian, step daughter Diana Baker Shark, aunts, uncles, other relatives and friends.
She is survived by her sister, Ann M. Budde, her brother Edward H. Budde and his wife Barbara, her nephews and nieces Mark and Suzanne Budde, Anne and Gavin Yoder, Paul and Kim Budde, and Cathy and Kevin Loughney, eleven great nieces and nephews. She is also survived by step son Ronald Baker and his two daughters Kristin and Heather, son in law Terry Shark, granddaughter Kim Shark, granddaughter Cindy Shark Hanson, her husband David Hanson and three great granddaughters.
The family thanks the staff at Hillside Manor, especially Marie Scott, RN, and Hillside Hospice for their care and attention to her needs. The family would also like to thank Fr. Will Arnold for the spiritual care he provided and the ladies of the parish who faithfully provided the Eucharist to Rita through the years.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations in Rita’s name to St. Katharine Drexel Parish.