Sister Rita Burke, 86


CUMBERLAND — Mercy Sister Rita Burke, 86, formerly known as Sister M. Josetta, died December 20 at Mount St. Rita Health Centre. She was a retired teacher and school administrator.

Born Rita Helen Burke in Providence, she was the daughter of the late James and Emily (Fallon)?Burke. She entered the Sisters of Mercy on February 2, 1941 and professed her vows on August 16, earning as well a master of education degree from Rhode Island College.

After teaching in several elementary schools in the Diocese of Providence, Sister Burke was appointed principal of SS. John and Paul School, Coventry in 1969.

Two years later, she became the principal of St. Margaret School, East Providence and in 1982 was appointed principal of St. Mary School, Cranston. In 1986 she transferred to St. Mary Academy-Bay View.

Sister Burke is survived by several nieces and nephews. She was the sister of the late Roberta Reisert, an associate of the Sisters of Mercy, and James Burke Jr.

A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated December 23 in Mount St. Rita Chapel. Burial was in Resurrection Cemetery.