Rita J. Lastort

June 4, 1940 - June 30, 2022
Rita J. Lastort

Memorial Gifts & Donations

Rita Joanne Lastort, 82, of Wilmington, NC passed away peacefully at Trinity Grove in the early morning of June 30th, 2022.

Rita was born in Detroit, MI, June 4, 1940 to the late Justine (Haines) and Charles Jarrett. Her family moved back to their Altoona, Pennsylvania roots, when Rita was 7.

Rita is preceded in death by her beloved husband, Joseph “JD” of 60 years. Surviving are her three children, Michael (Jan) of Takoma Park, MD, Renee Pennebacker (Paige) & Nicole Lee (Dylan), both of Wilmington, NC; Nanny to her three grandsons, Taran, Jarrett & Nicholas Pennebacker, who all reside in California.

Rita is survived by her brother Charles “Davey” Jarrett of Hollidaysburg, by her sister in law and brother in law, Martha (Lastort) and Mickey Paris of Altoona, and by her very best friend, Marie Petro, her soul sister. She is preceded in death by her brothers Carl and Philip.

After graduating from Altoona HS in 1958, Rita was a secretary at Wolf Furniture until she met the love of her life, got married and became a stay at home mom. She returned to work for 10 years at Home Nursing Agency, before retiring to Bradenton, FL in 1997 to be closer to her grandsons, where she continued her legacy of being the most amazing Nanny & played many key roles in their lives including being their number one, and loudest, soccer grandma cheerleader. She worked at Barnes Walker Attorneys at Law in Bradenton.

Rita was quite a jack of all trades and master of all. She was a gifted seamstress, gardener, home decorator, incredible chef and even a tree trimmer. She had a kitchen hair salon where she cut, styled, permed and colored. So many fun times in the kitchen salon.

Rita had a heart of gold and a beautiful cheerful personality. She touched the hearts of anyone she came into contact with. Her laughter and love of life was infectious and anyone who knew her instantly loved her. She was an amazing mother, grandmother, daughter, sister, aunt, niece, cousin and friend. Rita crossed paths with so many people whether it be work, Bunco, Pinochle club, bowling, band parties & beyond. Her fondest memory as a young girl was selling produce with her brothers on Water Street in Huntingdon. If you knew Rita, you know the story.

Rita was sadly stricken by Alzheimer’s Disease in her early 70s. Family had to place her in Trinity Grove in Wilmington, NC when JD, Renee & Paige moved to be closer to Nicole. She fought hard against this horrible disease until the end and even in her most difficult stage, she was still able to touch the hearts of the most amazing, patient, loving, God sent caregivers at Trinity Grove, who loved her until her last breath.

Rita will be sadly missed by all of us who loved her.

Family and friends will be received at Santella Funeral Home, 1106 8th Ave, Altoona, Tuesday, July 5, 2022 at 9:00 a.m., followed by a Mass at Our Lady of Mt Carmel, 806 11th Street at 10:30 a.m.. Funeral arrangements were made at Wilmington Funeral & Cremation, 1535 S 41st St, Wilmington, NC 28403. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Cure Alzheimer’s Fund Cure Alzheimer’s Fund, 34 Washington St, Ste 310, Wellesley Hills, MA 02481 https://curealz.org/giving/donate/ in Rita’s memory.Wilmington Funeral & Cremation – Wilmington Chapel – 1535 S. 41st Street Wilmington, NC 28403 910.791.9099

Service Mass

Our Lady of Mount Carmel
806 11th. Street
Altoona, PA 16602
(814) 942-8501

Tuesday, July 5, 2022
10:30 AM

Visiting Hours

Santella Funeral Home - Directions
1106 8th Avenue Altoona, PA 16602
  • Tuesday, July 5, 2022
  • 9:00 AM


Tribute Wall

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  • July 03, 2022
    Pamela Joy Holland says:
    I have many memories of Aunt Rita and in all of them she was laughing and happy. I remember many birthday parties with her and mom all sun tanned and having the most popular teased hair do's of the 70's. I remember many days at Gram's house on the porch talking and laughing and complaining lovingly about our significant others, and J.D. calling to see when she would be home and her saying she was on her way, and 20 minutes later we were still talking and laughing. When she was getting ready to leave for Florida she wanted mom and me to come get some bushes from her yard, I still have a beautiful flowering quince I got a piece of from her, and then there was this one she called a bush and my mom said was an Oak tree, but after much digging and pulling we got it out, I planted it next to a little creek that runs next to my house, needless to say it is an over 35 foot Oak tree that every day reminds me of her and all the laughter. I know if there is a flower garden in Heaven(and I hope there is) that there are 3 beautiful ladies taking care of the most beautiful flowers ever, and laughing, telling jokes, and gossiping about us all!! Rest in Peace Aunt Rita and reunite with J.D., Gram, and mom. Love you all!

  • July 01, 2022
    Jay Rawn says:
    I am so sorry for your loss.

  • July 01, 2022
    Candace Freese lit a candle:
    Lit since July 1, 2022 at 7:19:18 AM

  • July 01, 2022
    Brenda Snyder lit a candle:
    Lit since July 1, 2022 at 7:45:06 AM

  • June 30, 2022
    Ken Wood RN says:
    I love you Rita! Thank you for touching our lives for good!