Our loving mom Rita E. DeGroot passed away very peacefully Aug 11th surrounded by the love of family. Rita was born January 23, 1929 in Appleton, WI, to Raymond & Ethel Schreiter Sr. She was united in marriage to her first husband Walter H. (Bud) Lillge Jr on November 25th 1948 at St. Joseph Catholic Church Appleton, where she was a life-long member. Together they raised seven children. Mom and dad shared 27 wonderful years prior to his passing in August of 1977. In May 1988, mom married James DeGroot who proceeded her in death May 1989. Mom loved to bake, her molasses cookies were the best and requested often by her children and grandchildren. She hosted every major holiday; her home was always full of the love of her large family and always an abundance to eat. She cherished the many sleepovers at her home with her grandchildren, with blankets end to end on the living room floor, an endless supply of treats, Nintendo and movie watching well beyond their bedtimes. Mom was a woman of strong, deep faith, she loved The Lord, The Blessed Mother, St Joseph Catholic Church and the Capuchin priests who ministered to several generations of her family.
Mom is survived by her children & their spouses; Mike (Molly) Lillge, Eugene Lillge, Mary (Mark) Hagan, Tom (Mandy) Lillge, Val Seitz (special friend Jack Jaskowski), Julie Lillge and Peter Lillge; her grandchildren & great grandchildren: Terry (Danielle) Lillge (Eleanor, Grant), Tony (Nicky) Lillge (Liam, Zoe, Kaylyn); Justin Lillge, Crystal (Craig) Mantzke (Samuel), Ben Lillge and their mother Laurie McCulloch; Ryan (Ashley) Boelter (Quinlan, Alivia); Erin (Chad) Verbeten, Mark (Chelsey) Lillge (Aleya, Easton & Mark’s son Charlie), Cayla (Joe) Thompson; Elizabeth (Brady) Wojt, Steven Seitz (girlfriend Lauren); Katie Lillge (Ayden Ruppel) and Ayden’s dad Patrick Ruppel; her special second family Dennis & Jeannie Giaimo (Tom, Andrew, Halle). She is further survived by her “baby” brother Dick Schreiter, sister-in-law Esther Pietri and many nieces, nephews and friends.
Along with her parents, Bud & Jim, she was proceeded in death by her brothers, sisters and their spouses; Bob (Ruth)Schreiter, Marie (Bob) Laux, Barbara (Bob) Steger, Jim (Lucy) Schreiter, Fr. Daniel Schreiter, Ray Jr. (Rita) Schreiter, John (Patricia) Schreiter, Clem Schreiter & sister-in-law Mary Jane Schreiter, also preceded by her grandson Adam Boelter, son-in-law Larry Boelter, father-in-law Walter H. Lillge Sr., brother-in-law Karl (Janet) Lillge.
Family and friends are welcome to visit on Saturday, September 2nd, 2023 at St. Joseph Catholic Church, 404 W. Lawrence St. Appleton from 9:00am until the time of the funeral liturgy at 11:00am. In lieu of flowers and other expressions of sympathy, a memorial fund is being established for St. Joseph’s Parish and her beloved Capuchins and their ministries of doing God’s work.
The family would like to thank the staff at Dimensions Senior Living, Appleton and Moments Hospice Team for their excellent and compassionate care given to our mom, they were her earthly angels. We love you more mom and miss you dearly, your loving family. Dad, you are now her eternal man on a platter!