Rita Louise Audette (Souza), 82

Jul 12, 2020

Rita Louise Audette (Souza), 82, died in her home surrounded by her loving family on July 6, 2020 in Dartmouth. Her devotion to family and belief in God was pivotal during the good times and bad which ultimately provided the peace that she always displayed.

Rita was born on July 1, 1938 in New Bedford to her parents, Victor T. Souza and Mary Souza. She married Bernard Audette on May 14, 1960. Rita graduated from Saint Luke’s Hospital School of Nursing in the year 1959. She worked for 40 years as a maternity nurse at Saint Luke’s Hospital. Following that, she worked for Dr. Gormley as a pediatric nurse. During her mother’s admission at Alden Court, Rita expressed unconditional devotion to patients and staff which led her to being hired as a provider.

Along with being a devoted health care provider, Rita always put her family before herself. She was known for being warm-hearted, selfless, and profoundly giving throughout her lifetime. If you ever had the pleasure of meeting Rita, you could sense her authentic and loving empathy immediately.

Not only was family part of her primary focus, church and volunteering encompassed Rita’s daily life. She was involved in many ministries, including the Cursillo retreats, the Emmaus retreats, and the REC prison ministry. Also, Rita displayed spiritual devotion while serving as a Eucharistic minister and longtime parish member at Saint Julie Billiart Church.

Rita is survived by her three siblings: Rosemary Baptista and her late husband Joseph Baptista of Dartmouth, Ruth Anne Cafarelli and Thomas Sousa of New Bedford; three children and their spouses: Marc and Rhonda Audette of Dartmouth, Michelle and David Laporte of Tiverton, Melissa Audette and her companion John Burt of New Bedford; her 4 grandchildren, Matthew and wife Amanda Audette of Westport, Jenna and husband Keith Pereira of New Bedford, Krista and husband Ryan Resendes of Parkton, North Carolina; and Carissa Laporte of Tiverton; along with 6 great grandchildren; Dayton, Alivia, Meiya, Layla, Owen, and Emmett. She is preceded in death by her devoted husband, Bernard Audette; along with parents Victor and Mary Souza, and grandson Jacob Laporte. She was also survived by many nieces, nephews, and cousins.

Her funeral mass was held on July 11.

In lieu of flowers, an option is a donation to Dana-Farber Cancer Institute at P.O Box 849168, Boston MA 02284 or via www.dana-farber.org/gift. For online tributes, visit www.waring-sullivan.com.