Edith Sullivan

Obituary of Edith Sullivan

Edith Rita Sullivan, beloved wife of the late T. Bernard Sullivan, died at her home on June 7, 2007. Rita was born on Easter April 16, 1911 at Hazel Grove, Stockport, England to Herbert and Elizabeth (McQuaide) Smith. The family left England in 1916. They began their life in the States in St. Paul, Minnesota where an uncle was located. After six years of the harsh Minnesota weather, they headed east; they lived in Providence and Pawtuxet before moving to Newport in the mid1930's. Rita worked for the Telephone Company in Providence during the Great Depression. She and her future husband met on holiday aboard the boat to Block Island. They married in June of 1940 and soon after started their own landscaping and gardening business. Rita sold plants they had grown in their greenhouses and pansy patch on Tuckerman Avenue. Musically gifted, Rita played her piano as recently as her 96th birthday this past April. She was an avid jazz fan and attended the early Newport Jazz Festivals, sometimes donning rain gear to sit through an event. Many wonderful times were had with friends at the Newport Yacht Club. She was also a former member of the Newport Horticulture Society. She is survived by her daughter Patricia E.S. Murphy and son Lawrence Bernard Sullivan and his wife Linda of Middletown, grandchildren Tim Sullivan of Vancouver, WA, Kevin Sullivan of San Jose, CA, Stacey VanDorn of Dallas, TX and Jennifer Phillips, husband Brad and their children Courtney & Lauren of Vancouver, WA. A Mass of Christian Burial will take place, Monday, June 11, 2007 at St. Mary's Church, Spring St., Newport at 9:00am. Burial at St. Columba Cemetery in Middletown, R.I. Visiting hours Sunday, from 3:00 to 6:00pm in the O'Neill-Hayes Funeral Home, 465 Spring St., Newport, R.I. Donations may be made in Rita's memory to the Visiting Nurse Services of Newport and Bristol Counties, Hospice Program, P.O. Box 690, Portsmouth, RI 02871.
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