Rita Christine Knoll Barnhart, age 86, died peacefully on August 13, 2019 at Carriage Green in CT.Rita was one of 12 siblings (born of Mary Black Knoll and Frank Knoll) and raised in Chicora, PA. Her beloved siblings are as follows: Agnes Pfaff (deceased), Charles Knoll (deceased), Mary Geibel, Monica Glynn, Francis Knoll (deceased), John Knoll (deceased), Bernie Huefner, Fr. Lester Knoll, Thomas Knoll, Ed Knoll (deceased) and Betty Neff. Her education earned her a bachelor’s degree from Duquesne University in PA and a graduate degree from the University of Tulsa, OK. She was the mother to Brian (deceased July 10, 2019), Eric, Amy, Kirk and Myles. Rita was the grandmother to Dani, Ian, Ben and Alixandra. Rita lived in a great many places due to her deceased husband's (Raymond Barnhart) work, but made her final home in Rye Brook, NY for almost 2 decades where she greatly enjoyed her friends there. Rita had many passions but playing the piano and cooking were her two primary ones. She was extremely accomplished in both, performing professionally and writing a cookbook, Nutmeg. Rita was a devoted teacher for many years and was 'Teacher of the Year' in one of her final years teaching in Dallas, TX where she had lived for over 30 years. Rita always gave back to every community she resided in through her immense volunteer work. Her two primary ones were teaching ESL in Dallas and helping at The Den for Grieving Children in Greenwich, CT. Rita's greatest joy was her family. Throughout her life, no matter where she lived, she drove great distances to stay in close contact with her children, grandchildren, siblings and their families. She especially treasured those relationships. Rita was a beautiful, brilliant, creative woman who was loved by all who knew her. She will be missed greatly. A graveside service officiated by Rev. Lester Knoll, OFM, Cap, will be held Saturday, August 24 at 4:00 p.m. at St. Patrick Cemetery in Sugar Creek Twp., Armstrong Co. with a dinner following at Cindy's Place. In lieu of flowers, please consider joining her in helping The Den for Grieving Children/Family Center: 40 Arch St., Greenwich, CT 06830 or online at www.familycenters.org. Arrangements are under the direction of Hile Funeral Home of Chicora. Condolences may be sent by visiting www.hilefh.com.
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