Cover photo for Wilma Rittel's Obituary
Wilma Rittel Profile Photo
1935 Wilma 2017

Wilma Rittel

May 7, 1935 — February 18, 2017

Wilma Jane Rittel was born to William Alexander, and Jane Elizabeth Bowman May 7, 1935. Wilma passed Saturday, February 18, 2017 at the age of 81. Wilma grew up in Ohio, where her daughter Ginger Bowman was born.

As a child Wilma helped care for her younger brothers, William and Larry Bowman. She loved to tell stories of the mischief Larry and William would get into and blame her for. Wilma married young, and moved her family from Ohio to Los Angeles, where she became employed as an accountant. She often recalled being able to walk down the sidewalk in Bellflower and pull Oranges down from the trees. To escape the big city, Wilma moved to Arizona. She was an avid dog lover, and has had at least one dog in her home all throughout her life. At one point the family dog, Rags, was a shaggy mutt that loved to lay on the cool tile floor during hot Arizona summers. Little did Rags know that Wilma had just finished waxing the floor when he laid down to take his nap one day. Wilma walked into the kitchen later to find a very distressed pup glued to the floor and recalled with a giggle having to cut him away from the tile, then having to scrape up the fur left behind! Later, when her family moved to Arizona, Wilma met the love of her life, Wesley Rittel. After they were married Wesley became a Sherrif's Deputy, and Wilma the Jailer and court clerk for Yuma county. So at night, the sheriffs would bring people in to jail, the prisoners would tell each other about the stories they'd make up for the judge, then the next morning they would walk into court and there was Wilma, smiling at them. The prisoners knew then the stories they'd made up wouldn't work because she'd already heard them cooking up their lies. After both Wilma and Wesley retired they decided a life of leisure was boring, so they would drive long haul trucking routes together. The two made a wonderful team till Wesley passed in 1996.

Wilma was a wonderful woman with a smile to lighten any room, and a joke for every occasion. She never met a stranger, and would often tap a person on the shoulder just to tell them a joke, in line at the grocery store, or the waiting room at the hospital, didn't matter. She introduced herself and was known to everyone as "Grammy." Wilma prized animals as angels on earth, and would do anything to protect an animal in need. To the point that we could not even find a single picture of her without a dog in it. She was never afraid of anyone or anything, even once holding a group of Hell's Angels at gun point. Her family came first, and foremost. Wilma perfected the art of sarcasm, and enjoyed her craft to the fullest. She will be missed dearly, and we will strive to live in her image.

Wilma was preceded in death by her husband, Wesley Rittel on February 23, 1996. She left behind her daughter, Ginger Bowman, and grandchildren: Paul Adams, and wife Betina, Aiden Adams and Madeleine Allerheiligen.


Memorial Service

Ballard Funeral Chapel
910 S. Main St.
Roswell, NM  88203
Saturday, February 25, 2017
11:00 am
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Wilma Rittel, please visit our flower store.


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