Rita Dora Winters

Mar 24, 1926 – Aug 5, 2017

Rita Dora Winters obituary image 1



Rita Alire Winters, age 91, passed away at home in Des Moines, WA, surrounded by her family on Saturday, August 5, 2017. She was born on March 24, 1926, in New Mexico, to Adolfo Ortiz and Maria Lozano Gonzales.

Rita married Ben Alire in 1943. They were married for 32 years and raised three children, Tom, Patricia Santulli (Paul), and Richard. Ben passed away at an early age, and Rita found strength and support in her Catholic community. Rita found love again and married Richard Winters in 1978 further extending her family with two additional grown children Susan Roth (Duane) and Robert (Laurie). Although Richard preceded Rita in death, she was ultimately surrounded by special friends and loving family, which included nine grandchildren, ten great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.

Rita had a long and productive career with Pacific Northwest Bell and even in retirement, Rita couldn’t slow down. She travelled the world and after an inspirational visit to Medjugorje, she dedicated her life to prayer. Rita was extraordinarily steadfast in her faith and generously brought healing and comfort to all who needed her.

Family, friends, travel, playing cards, reading, dining out and the occasional trip to the slot machines kept her laughing and loving life. Those who knew her know that God was always on her side, because she always came up the winner. Jesus welcomes you home, Hijita.

On Sunday, August 13, 2017, visitation will be held at Bonney-Watson Washington Memorial Funeral Home 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM. On Monday, August 14, 2017, all the people whose lives Rita touched are invited to St. Philomena Catholic Church, 1790 South 222nd St, Des Moines, WA, for visitation beginning at 09:00 AM, followed by the Rosary and Mass beginning at 10:30 AM. Please visit www.BonneyWatson.com for full details and online guestbook.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Catholic Community Services or to Northwest Harvest.


Vicki, John, Darcy and Jeff Frantz
Seattle, WA
Aug 17, 2017

Dearest Rita, has always been our Earth Angel with such love and caring for everyone. God bless her dear family.

Pam Dryden
Des Moines, WA
Aug 14, 2017

Such an honor to have known this truly amazing woman, and to be her Hairstylist for so many years. I called her my "Prayer Warrior." I will miss our great conversations, laughter and of course, our prayers. You will be forever in my heart, Rita!

My siincere sympathy to all of her family and my thanks to Pat for being a wonderful Daughter to your Mother. I hope that you are all able to take comfort in knowing that she is with her Savior.

Amber Hitchcock Mennillo
Bellevue, WA
Aug 13, 2017

Auntie Rita is such a special woman. I love how she shared her faith with us. I'm going to miss her so much. The entire family is in my prayers. Love, Amber, Paul, Mia and Ella.

Barbara Slade Hitchcock
Bellevue, WA
Aug 13, 2017

Donna "Jai" Slade Adams
corvallis, Or
Aug 11, 2017

Some of my earliest memories were at my cousin Rita and Benny's house with Tommy, Patsy and Ricky. I loved it there. Also, all the family holidays where we numbered sometimes in the 30's. I loved hearing spanish spoken among the adults. The warm hospitality, inclusiveness, going to midnight mass. God Bless You Rita. Enjoy!

Sherry and Joe Holder
Ocean Shores, WA
Aug 9, 2017

Our sincere thoughts and prayers. Rita touched so many of us with her loving heart and kindness. My deepest sympathy to the family. She will always be remembered

Michael A. Della Vecchia.
Ponte Vedra, FL
Aug 9, 2017

My sincere sympathies. I am so glad that my mom and Tita were so close and that I was able to visit and know Rita's warmth as a young kid visiting Seattle.

Jane Mattson
Des Moines, WA
Aug 8, 2017

I am so sorry for the loss of your Mother. She was a truly amazing person and will be missed by all. RIP Rita

This obituary is provided by Bonney-Watson, providing caring and compassionate funeral, cremation and cemetery services since 1868. We have a professional staff, four funeral homes, two cremation facilities and one of the largest cemeteries south of Seattle, as well as a comprehensive grief support program.