Rita Girouard Mertig, 75, of Henrico, VA, passed away on October 20, 2019.
Rita was born in Worcester, Massachusetts to Jeannette and Joseph Girouard on March 17, 1944. She attended St. Joseph Elementary School, Maria Assumpta Academy High School, and studied Nursing at Georgetown University. She further achieved a Masters of Nursing at the University of California, San Francisco Medical Center. Rita married Robert Mertig in December 1969. She worked as a Nurse and later as a Professor of Nursing at J. Sargent Reynolds and John Tyler Community Colleges for 40 years. In addition to her professional career, Rita was the author of several books, Teaching Nursing in an Associate Degree Program, 2003; Nurses’ Guide to Teaching Diabetes Self-Management, 1st edition, 2007 and 2nd edition, 2012; and What Nurses Know…Diabetes, 2011. She has contributed chapters in several textbooks and other professional works. She enjoyed knitting, sewing, and teaching diabetes and weight management classes at CrossOver Ministries Clinic, Henrico County, VA. She especially enjoyed being Grandma to her grandchildren and organizing her high school and college mini-reunions.
Rita is preceded in death by her parents, Jeannette and Joseph Girouard; her brother-in-law, Charles Mertig; and in-laws, Edward and Helen Mertig. Rita was a devoted wife, mother and grandmother and will be greatly missed. Despite her impressive professional accomplishments, family always came first. Rita is survived by her husband, Robert Lee Mertig; children Karen Lee Mertig (John Finarelli) and Kelley Anne Mertig (Mario Wierling); grandchildren John Trajan Briggs Finarelli, Artem Forssell Wierling, Briggs Tiberius Wierling, and Caecilia Elisabeth Wierling; brother Paul Joseph Girouard (Marianne Curran); nephew Paul Keith Girouard (Colleen Girouard); sister-in-law Pat Mertig; nephews Michael Mertig and Karl Mertig (Stephanie Mertig) and their children, Carter and Delaney.
The Mertig Family wishes to extend our sincere thanks to all of the wonderful caregivers who helped our mother and family.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at noon on Friday, October 25 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church on Gayton Road. The family will receive friends one hour prior to the service at the church with a reception to follow. Burial will be private.
Memorials may be given to the Diabetes Association and Cancer Society.