Melville—Graveside Funeral services and Rite of Committal will be held for Rita Leger Gerace at 2:30 p.m. on Thursday, January 14, 2021, in the St. John Catholic Church Cemetery in Melville, LA. Rev. Fr. Michael DeBlanc will officiate the services.
Visitation will be held on Thursday, January 14, 2021, from 1:00 p.m. until 2:00 p.m. in Lafond-Ardoin Funeral Home of Melville. A Rosary service will be held at 2:00 p.m. in the funeral home.
Rita Leger Gerace was born in Bayou Rouge, LA, to the former, Lillian Vigie Leger and Louis Leger, Sr. on November 19, 1931. She lived most of her life in Bayou Current, LA, and spent the last several years of her life in Baton Rouge, LA.
She left this earthly realm on Monday, January 11, 2021, at the age of 89. She passed away at the Carpenter House in Baton Rouge after a brief recovery time due to the complications of her previous COVID diagnosis. It would be wrong to say that Rita lost her battle because she never stopped fighting. No matter how sick she was, she was always determined. When anyone else would have broken, Rita stayed strong. Through her, we know what resilience and perseverance truly look like. There was no quit to Rita. Just because she is no longer here, it doesn’t mean she lost her fight.
Rita loved good food and socializing, enjoyed being with her family and always willing to help when needed. She enjoyed being surrounded by her family, especially all her grandchildren whom she adored. Rita was happily married for 59 years to her loving husband, Sam Gerace, Jr. Her family was her whole heart. She was Catholic and attended St. John’s Cathedral in Baton Rouge. She was a loving mother, and a caring sister, aunt, grandmother, great-grandmother, and great-great-grandmother who will be greatly missed by all that loved and knew her.
She also enjoyed being outdoors gardening and traveling with her family around the United States. As a homemaker who was talented with cooking Cajun and Italian food dishes, baking, canning, and sewing.
She is survived by her son, Teryl Gerace, Sr. and wife, Monica of Baton Rouge; her daughter, Von Da Leigh Gerace Benezech of Baton Rouge; two brothers, Levi Leger and wife, Marie of Palmetto; and Louis “Junior” Leger, Jr. and wife, Glynda of Gulport, Mississippi; two grandchildren, Gene Gerace and wife, Angel of Port Barre; and Travis Gerace of Bayou Current; five great-grandchildren, and six great-great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Sam Gerace, Jr.; her parents, Louis Leger, Sr. and Lillian Vigie Leger; son-in-law, Patrick Benezech; sisters: Agnes Dupree, Blanche Manuel, Cecicle Schexnayder, Irene Vidrine, Ida Lorena, and Rose Ann Leger; brothers: Preston Leger, Anthony “Slim” Leger, and Henry Leger.
In lieu of flowers, monetary donations can be made to the Alzheimer’s Association.
Family and friends are invited to sign and view the online guestbook at www.lafondardoin.com.
LaFond-Ardoin Funeral Home of Melville, 607 First Street, Melville, LA, 71353 (337-942-2638) has been entrusted with the funeral arrangements.
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