More than 100 family members and friends attended a thanksgiving service at Hose for Rita Alice Pearson, who has died aged 87.
A teacher and college lecturer by profession, Rita was born in Hose in January 1931.
Her father, Archie, was a carpenter, and her mother Win was from the large Allen family living locally.
Rita attended Hose School and, in 1942, obtained a place at King Edward VII Grammar School in Melton.
She remembered it as a difficult time for the school with many of the teachers overseas fighting in the Second World War and some of the pupils were evacuees from cities which had been bombed.
At school, Rita excelled at music and sport, playing hockey in the winter and tennis in the summer
In 1949, she won a place at Nelson Hall Teacher Training College, near Stoke on Trent, studying domestic science.
Afterwards, she came home to Hose and got her first teaching post at Toothill Bingham, when it opened in 1952.
A few years later, Rita took a job at her old school in Melton, where she was head of the domestic science department,
She also played the piano for productions of Gilbert and Sullivan operettas.
Rita’s next career move was to become a lecturer in home economics at Clifton College Nottingham, and during this time she studied for, and completed, a university degree course in 1974.
Many of her pupils and colleagues kept in touch, with regular reunions arranged.
Rita was living in Hose with her parents and helped takecare of her ailing father, while also taking over church organ playing duties when her mother was no longer able to.
Throughout these years Rita refined her considerable skill in cakemaking and icing.
Her cousin’s children and grandchildren were all in awe of their aunt’s expertise.
Whenever a wedding, christening or special birthday came along, they enjoyed a decorated masterpiece.
Rita always loved travelling, and enjoyed visiting many places on holiday around Britain and Europe.
After her parents passed on, she went further afield, visiting South Africa, USA and a cousin in Canada.
In 1995, Rita built a home of her own, next door to South View where she had lived with her parents. This gave her a more manageable garden, lovingly creating lawns, flower beds and a vegetable patch.
She took a course in computing, which enabled her to keep in touch with her many friends by email.
Rita became less mobile before a knee replacement.
Only in the last few years was she unable to make her beloved special event cakes. As she found her standards dropping she reluctantly stopped making them.
Throughout her long fulfilling life, Rita maintained her focus on faith, family, and friends.
Her last four months were very difficult, as she suffered a stroke and spent time in the Queen’s Medical Centre at Nottingham and Waltham Hall Nursing Home.
Relatives and friends enjoyed a sumptuous tea at Rita’s thanksgiving service in the village hall and viewed examples of her icing masterpieces, embroidery and photos from throughout her life.
Donations totalling more than £900 were divided between Hose Church and the Stroke Association.