Rhea Emelia Little, née Diotte

June 3, 2020 8 Condolences Print Obituary

August 19, 1930 - May 31, 2020

“Seize the moment. Remember all those women on the 'Titanic' who waved off the dessert cart.”
― Erma Bombeck

Like her favourite author, Erma Bombeck, Rhea always enjoyed entertaining people with a story or witty comment. She also always checked out the dessert table at a buffet before the other courses.

One of Rhea’s favourite expressions was “go see, go do” and that she did. Over her lifetime Rhea mostly lived in the Ottawa area with a few years in Orillia, Brockville, and finally Edmonton. She worked as a cashier at the A&P, a hostess at the Green Valley Restaurant and many years for Sears in customer service. Some of her happiest times were the many retirement summers at McCullough’s Landing and winters spent in Daytona Beach, Florida with her husband Jack, and her trips with her sister, Myrna. Their camper van trip across Canada and around the United States was particularly memorable, as well as their trip to France and Switzerland.

Rhea had a keen mind, was always learning and enjoyed discussing current affairs. She loved a good euchre game, attending craft group with daughter Karen and friends, and a visit to the casino, particularly Akwesasne. In Edmonton Rhea delighted in the many festivals, music concerts and warm welcome of her faith community, Westwood Unitarian Congregation. Rhea loved to celebrate family and holiday occasions. In Edmonton, the niche outside her door at Rosedale Estates was decorated for each season and celebration, not to mention the accompanying hat and accessories.

Born in Arnprior ON, Rhea died peacefully, in her sleep, at the Royal Alexandra Hospital, Edmonton AB, in the company of her daughter, Brenda, and surrounded by the love of family and friends near and far.

Rhea was predeceased by her parents, Ann and Joe Diotte, her sister Jackie, and her beloved husband, Jack Little. She is survived by her sisters, Sylvia Williams, Eleanor Orser, Myrna Duford, Donna Prince and Lynda Diotte, as well as her daughters Brenda Jackson (Jean-Marcel Duciaume), and Karen Matt (Ernie).

In addition to sister, wife and mother, Rhea proudly claimed the roles of Grandma, GG (Great-Grandma) and Great-Great Grandma to her daughters’ families in Ontario, Alberta, BC and Australia. GG’s special musical cards and treat bags were always anticipated with delight at birthday and Christmas times.

Rhea’s family thanks the staff of Rosedale Estates, Edmonton, for the excellent care and friendly atmosphere. She felt at home there, enjoying the many activities and friends. A special thank you to the staff of Unit 5 East, Robbins Pavilion, at the Royal Alexandra hospital. Nurses, aides, doctors, food service and cleaning staff, the extraordinary compassion and care you offered during such difficult times is truly appreciated.

Rhea lived a good long life. She will be remembered with love.

An on-line memorial service via Zoom is planned for August 19, 2020 at 2 pm Edmonton time, 4 pm Ottawa time. The Zoom portal will open at 1pm MDT/3pmEDT and remain open for an hour after the service for visits.

Join Online: https://uuma.zoom.us/j/97537986853   Meeting ID: 975 3798 6853

In lieu of flowers, a donation in her memory to Westwood Unitarian Congregation, the Heart & Stroke Foundation, or a charity of your choice would be appreciated.

Donations to these and many worthwhile organisations can be made through Canada Helps. https://www.canadahelps.org/

  1. We will sure miss her at church. I will miss especially her smile and wit, and how kind and engaging she was with my young daughter. Rhea was always keen to chat with Rowan about her toys, dress, activities, or to show my daughter something and get her smiling, comfortable, and chatting away. I enjoyed playing music for Rhea. I’m sure your family will miss her dearly. Her brightness and light has touched many lives. I’m thinking of you and sending my love. With condolences, Sheila and Rowan

  2. It was such a pleasure to get to know Rhea during her time here in Edmonton. We spent many enjoyable occasions together. She brought a sparkle to every place she went – such a lady. I will miss her so much.

  3. My sincere condolences, Karen and Ernie. Your mom sounded like a wonderful lady , you were blessed to have such a person in your lives . Sandra Colwell , Arnprior

  4. Such a remarkable, cheerful woman. I am glad to have had a chance to meet her and saddened that we will not be able to continue our Sunday morning chats.

  5. Our thoughts are with you all during this time. We were blessed to get to know Rhea through our visits with Karen and Ernie. She had a wonderful zest for life. We send condolences to all the family.
    Pat and David Tait and family

  6. Rhea Emelia Little was an amazing individual “Go see, go do.” An expression we should all adopt and encompass into our lives. Rhea lived an amazing life, full of great experiences that will always be remember by those of the lives she’s touched.

    Let’s celebrate the amazing person she was, the lives shes touched, and the next amazing journey that awaits her.

  7. Love you Grandma (Matthew) & Great Grandma (Lavender). We will always carry you in our hearts and minds and know you will be watching down over us.

    I’ll be sure to carry on the traditional shouting of “euchre” followed by the “cackle” and stomping of the feet 🙂 just to rub it in a bit.

    Thanks for never telling me how you got on the pool table to fall asleep so we could have a guys night and play poker one of life’s many mysteries <3

    Love you Grandma / Great Grandma <3 XoXoXoXo (Insert Singing Card)

  8. My condolences to you and your family. Although I only met her a few times Rhea seemed a remarkable lady, undaunted by the challenges she faced. I am so glad she enjoyed her last years here in Edmonton with family close by.

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