Rita (Schade) Lunney

   Rita (Schade) Lunney, 89, of Redfield, SD, passed away peacefully on Sunday, May 21, 2023, at Community Memorial Hospital Avera in Redfield, after a brief and courageous battle with cancer. 

   Her memorial service will be at 2:00 p.m. on Thursday, May 25, at the First Congregational United Church of Christ in Redfield.  Reverend Keith C. Kraft will officiate.  Light refreshments will be served following the service in the church fellowship hall. 

   Rita’s service will be live-streamed on the funeral home’s website below her obituary.  Arrangements have been entrusted to Hyke Funeral Home of Redfield (www.hykefuneralhome.com).

   In lieu of flowers, please direct memorials to the First Congregational United Church of Christ (125 E 7th Ave. – Redfield, SD – 57469) or Tri-County Good Samaritan Center (19 East 7th Ave. – Redfield, SD – 57469).

   Rita was born on December 3, 1933, to George and Ella (Irwin) Schade on a farm south of Zell, SD.  She attended country school through 8th grade and then started high school in Redfield.  After graduating in 1951, Rita started working at The First National Bank, where she worked for several years. 

   On September 3, 1953, Rita married Ben Lunney, to which three children were born.  Rita stayed home for several years raising her children and eventually returned to work at the bank until she and Ben purchased the Sears Catalog Store.  They enjoyed working together and ran the store for 21 years. 

   In 1991, Rita and Ben retired and bought a trailer at West Whitlock on the Missouri River and took up their favorite pastime – fishing!  They spent 20 summers there and had a lot of good times with old friends and new friends they met there. 

   Rita’s faith and church were always an important part of her life.  She was a member of the Wheaton Church before coming to Redfield and joining the First Congregational United Church of Christ, where she was a member for over 70 years.  She taught Sunday School, served on many committees, and was a member of Ruth Circle, where she served many funerals over the years. 

   In the past, Rita volunteered at Redfield Elementary School and Tri-County Good Samaritan Center.  She also served on the boards of the Redfield Housing Authority and the Redfield Area Concert Association. 

Rita enjoyed the simple pleasures in life and was a big fan of high school sports.  She loved watching and cheering for the Redfield Pheasants and never wanted to miss a game.  She also enjoyed playing cards and going to the Legion Burger Bash with her “Golden Girls” friends.  Another highlight of the past few years was participating in the summer neighborhood BBQ’s – she liked bringing the brownies.  Her attentive neighbors were always watching out for her.

   Rita is survived by her daughter Shelly Loveless of Billings, MT; son Dan Lunney of Erie, CO; three grandsons:  David Lunney of Austin, TX, Patrick Lunney of Denver, CO, and Brendan Lunney of Denver, CO; and many nieces and nephews who she was always close to.

   She was preceded in death by her husband Ben in 2013, a daughter in infancy, parents, parents-in-law, sisters:  Irene McCart, Doris Paschke, Roberta Schade, and Ila Mae Bush, as well as her brother Don Schade.