MADISON – Rita Jackson, aged 78, passed away on August 27, 2021 at St. Mary’s Hospital. She was born on November 22, 1942 in Richland Center to Merton and Rita (Fargen) Prouty. The family lived in Spring Green and for a brief time in Florida, Texas and California while Merton served his country. Rita was a 1960 graduate of Spring Green High School. She married her high school sweetheart, Jan Jackson, on March 3, 1962. They made their home in Madison, Wisconsin, and had 4 children: Lisa, Dan, Robert, and Matthew. Rita was a homemaker while her children were young, and cared for close family friend Susan (Hohlstein) Goethel who was like a fifth child to the family. Rita and Jan were both active volunteers with Boy Scouts of America for many years. Further, when the children were school aged, Rita began to work as a classroom and library aide at Mendota School.
She greatly enjoyed her work, but selflessly retired when she learned that she would be a grandma for the first time. Rita drove from Madison to Sussex each week to care for her first grandson half weeks for three years. The time she spent is indicative of her love and devotion to all her grandchildren. Rita also shared her son Dan’s love of theater and spent many evenings and weekends as a volunteer usher at The Overture Center. She also shared this love with her grandsons, taking them to many shows. Rita was an active member of St. Peter’s Church in Madison and volunteered through the years in several capacities, including teaching Sunday School and cleaning the church. She also thoroughly enjoyed the sisterly fellowship and philanthropy of her sorority, Epsilon Sigma Alpha.
Sadly, Rita was preceded in death by her daughter Lisa and her husband Jan, in addition to her parents. She is survived by her sons Dan (Debbie) Jackson, Matthew (Dee) Jackson, and Robert (Michelle) Jackson, as well as her beloved siblings: Linda (Mike) Federman, Timm (Jane) Prouty and Danny (Jennifer) Prouty, brother-in-law Craig (Ann) Jackson, and many nephews, nieces, and their children.
Rita’s greatest wish was to regain her health to see each of her grandchildren reach adulthood. Unfortunately, her nearly two-year battle with a chronic version of Guillain-Barré syndrome took her from them, but her love lives on in Nate, Brayden, Zeke and Xander.
It was important to Rita that any gathering in her memory not put her family and friends at risk for illness. To respect her wishes, the family has decided to re-evaluate Covid counts in the Spring to determine when services will be held. To view and sign this guestbook, please visit: www.ryanfuneralservice.com.
Ryan Funeral Home & Cremation Services
2418 N. Sherman Avenue
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