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Rita M. Vilkinofsky, 53

February 4, 2014

Rita M. Vilkinofsky, 53, of Punxsutawney, died Monday, Feb. 3, 2014, at UPMC Mercy Hospital in Pittsburgh.

She was born Jan. 11, 1961, in Phillipsburg, a daughter of the late Bernard Vilkinofsky and Dorothy Goda-Vilkinofsky, who survives.

Rita was a member of Saints Cosmas and Damian Catholic Church.

She attended SS.C.D. School and was a 1978 graduate of Punxsutawney Area High School and a graduate of Gannon University.

Rita resided in Erie, Pa., for 20 years.

She worked for Erie Insurance, volunteered for the Red Cross and enjoyed spending time at Lake Presque in Erie.

After returning to Punxsutawney, Rita volunteered for Relay for Life and enjoyed spending time with family and friends.

Rita is survived by her mother and three sisters, Joan Vilkinofsky of Hedgesville, W. Va.; Nancy and husband Michael Young of Clermont, Fla.; and Wanda Thomas of Punxsutawney.

In addition, Rita is survived by nephews Eric Schanzenbacher of Punxsutawney and Dylan Pearce of State College; niece Alexandra and husband Willard Hawks of Henning, Tenn.; step-niece Ashley Thomas of Punxsutawney; and step-nephew Vincent A. Thomas of Santa Maria, Calif.

Rita is also survived and will be greatly missed by her great-niece Aurora Stout and great-nephew Connor Hawks, both of Henning, Tenn.

She was preceded in death by her father and maternal and paternal

Friends will be received from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, Feb. 7, 2014, at Shumaker Funeral Home, Inc., Punxsutawney.

A funeral Mass will be held at 12:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 8, 2014, at Saints Cosmas and Damian Catholic

Church, officiated by Monsignor Joseph Riccardo.

The family thanks and appreciates long-time caregiver and best friend Penny Blose and, in addition, Marcy Petroff and Eric Schanzenbacher, for years of service to Rita.

She endured her limitations with gracious acceptance and always thought of others before herself.

She will be greatly missed by all who knew her.

Memorial contributions may be made in Rita's memory to the National MS Society, Western PA Chapter, 1501 Reedsdale St., Suite 105, Pittsburgh, PA 15233 or to SS.C.D. Church.

Online condolences may be made at

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