Rita P. (Cardinale) Godfrey

Rita P. (Cardinale) Godfrey, 92, of Danbury, passed away on August 5, 2019. 
She fervently believed that “I shall pass this way but once; any good that I can do or any kindness I can show to any human being; let me do it now. Let me not defer nor neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again.” (Etienne de Grellet) 
She applied her kindness first to her three children. Her daughter Ann was her companion and caregiver, who inherited Rita’s talent for and love of music. Her son, State Representative Bob Godfrey was her firstborn, who inherited her commitment to public service, and her interest in gardening. Her late son Rik was her youngest, and had inherited her creativity.
She was born December 15, 1926 to the late Dominick and Anna (Ponticelli) Cardinale. Her sister, Diane LaCava of Indiana had been as close as sisters can be. Her brother Donald, a career Air Force airman, passed away in 2014. She is survived by a number of Godfrey, Cardinale, and LaCava nieces and nephews. 
She attended Danbury public schools, and her kindness grew when she graduated from the nursing school at Danbury Hospital, participating in the U.S. Cadet Nurse Corps at the end of World War II. As a Registered Nurse, she compassionately tended to patients in Danbury Hospital’s Maternity Ward, at Danbury Orthopedics, for the late Dr. Roger Castro, and as a school nurse in the Danbury School system. 
She was active in school, civic, and veteran’s organizations. She was a member of the St. Peter Ladies Guild, performing in its annual variety show. She served on Danbury’s Commissions on Aging, and was besties with the late City Clerk, Betty Crudgington. She was President of the Catholic War Veteran’s Auxiliary Post 1042. She was active with the alumnae of the Danbury Hospital Nursing School’s class of 1947. 
She was a big fan of the UConn Women’s Basketball team, and shared her interest with both her daughter and with her close friend, the late Eleanor Lewis. She hosted the Wednesday Ladies’ Tea, an excuse to play cards and laugh with two good friends, Sally Wilkes and Grace Tomaino. In the words of her favorite singer, Frank Sinatra, she said throughout her long and kind life, “I did it my way.” 
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday August 10, 2019 at Saint Peter Church, 121 Main St., Danbury.

Interment will be private at St. Peter Cemetery, Danbury.

There will be no calling hours.

 Jowdy-Kane Funeral Home, 9-11 Granville Ave., Danbury is in charge of arrangements.


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