It is with great sadness, that the family of Rita D Tanguay of Beverly, MA, announce that she passed away peacefully on the evening of May 25, 2018 at Kaplan House in Danvers, MA.
Born in Salem, MA on December 22, 1924 to the late Eugene and Mary (LaChance) Pelletier, Rita was a strong, independent woman who touched the lives of everyone who knew her. Along with her robust, self-determined nature, she was also sweet, jovial and altruistic. Ultimately, it was her unconditional love for family and friends that was her most endearing quality.
Rita married Frank A Tanguay, Sr. on September 2, 1946. They raised their three children for a short time in Salem then moved to Beverly until Frank Sr. passed away in 1977.
Before her entry into motherhood, Rita sang Country Western music with her sister, Jan, where the duo was known as the “Harmony Sisters”. The two played live on the radio and at various venues throughout their career. Beyond being a singer, Rita was a fantastic cook (ask for her coffee ring recipe), she loved traveling and could often be found tearing up the dance floor at the Pioneer Club after a long day of work cleaning houses, only sleeping a few hours before she had to wake up again the next day for work. In her later years, she met Ernie LeBrie, her long-term boyfriend and veteran of the Battle of the Bulge. Ernie brought her tremendous joy until his passing in 2004.
Rita was a devout Catholic who never missed Mass, even if it meant having to wear a bonnet to cover her freshly set hair. Her children would often find her praying and she asked that they come back in 30 to 45 minutes while she finished saying her prayers.
She also loved watching the Red Sox, keeping up on current politics, vacationing in California with Skip, Diane and their children, as well as playing slot machines, the lottery, Skip-Bo and Kitty Wist.
Rita is survived by her three children, Linda “Lyn” R. Soper (Ralph; deceased) of Amesbury, MA, Frank A. Tanguay, Jr. of Peabody, MA and Gene “Skip” Tanguay (Diane) of San Carlos, CA. as well as her loving grandchildren: Joe E. Schock (deceased), Laura L. Schock, Amy L. Foss (Justin), Debbie E. Tanguay and Jeff S. Tanguay. She also leaves behind numerous great-grandchildren; nieces and nephews: Susan, Donald, Lucille and Richard Gagnon, Dorothy Litwin; also close friends Betty Misura, Barb Yescalis and Jessica Shade.
She was predeceased by her two sisters, Jan and Eva, and three brothers, Willie, Arthur and Leo.
Rita’s wake is scheduled for Thursday, May 31 from 4 to 7pm at MacKey’s Funeral Home in Middleton, MA. A Mass will be held at 9 am at Saint Mary’s Church in Danvers on Friday, followed by a funeral procession at the North Beverly Cemetery.