On Monday, November 27th, surrounded by family and friends, Rita Gloria Irwin passed away at the Ottawa General Hospital after a brief illness. An independent woman to the very end, Rita made the choice to depart this life on her own terms. Her courage and concern for others throughout this process was an inspiration to all.
Rita, the youngest of six children, was born to parents Edward David Irwin and Doris Hilda Gready in Portsmouth, England on September 2nd, 1938 and spent most of her young life travelling and living in other countries. Rita joined the Women’s Royal Air Force at age 17 in 1956 and was stationed in both England and Cyprus.
She married in 1959 and immigrated to Canada with her then husband, Jim Walters, and young son in 1961. Since that time she spent all but one year living and working in Ottawa, Ontario. She retired in 1998 after 28 years of service with Nortel.
Prior to retirement, Rita enjoyed working out and meeting friends at the BNR/Nortel gym, then the YMCA for a few years and finally Planet Fitness.
Rita maintained many longterm friendships, spanning decades, from her work as a Patent Secretary with Nortel and enjoyed regular coffee and lunch dates with her friends.
Rita’s family predeceased her and so to commemorate her life she wrote her autobiography, detailing her life and family ancestry, in words and photos, for her children and grandchildren.
In recent years Rita took up puzzling and diamond dot painting and her home was adorned with many of the beautiful images she created. Rita loved Facebook and was an active participant, creating numerous, close friendships through her online hobby and games groups.
Rita is survived by her son Rick (Faith), daughter Joanne (John Scott), grandchildren Josh (Maybelle), Bryn (David), Dylan, Izak, Yzabelle and great grandchildren Ark, Annabella, Azi, Aemy, Ally and River
In accordance with Rita’s wishes, her remains are to be cremated. No visitation or memorial service will be held. Condolences may be made at colefuneralservices.com.