Rosalie Ida (Rettstatt) Foley
May 30, 1933 – July 16, 2023
Rosalie Ida (Rettstatt) Foley, 90, of Mesa, AZ., and formerly of Hancock, MA., passed away peacefully with her loving family by her side on July 16, 2023, after a brief illness.
Born in Rawlins, Wyoming on May 30, 1933, she was the daughter of Lucien Doty Rettstatt and Naomi Ethel Trego. She grew up and attended schools in Thermopolis before moving to Pittsfield, Massachusetts, graduating from Pittsfield High School in 1951.
She met the love of her life Donald Frank Foley and were married on August 16, 1952, in Saint Stephen’s Episcopal Church. They celebrated 69 years together before Don’s passing in 2021.
Rose moved to Arizona in 1985 because she loved the desert landscape, its climate, and tales of lost gold mines and hidden treasures in the Superstition Mountains. She was a renaissance woman. Besides being charming, witty, well-educated, and well-mannered she was a talented painter, writer, seamstress, genealogist, and appreciated the beauty in everything.
She raised six children and was an industrious person. Rose owned and operated two businesses, Kay-Rose Upholstery and End of the Rainbow Antique Shop, both located in Stephentown, NY, worked as a nurse’s aide, tutored college students in English and math, operated a school bus service for the Hancock Schools, and was a portrait artist at county fairs.
She was always in the middle of a project like making clothes for her children and grandchildren, writing family stories, oil painting, or scrapbooking. She especially enjoyed having long conversations with family and friends, reading her bible, and making an occasional trip to a local casino to play bingo or keno. In her younger years you could find Rose under the hood or chassis of an automobile. She loved caring for and driving her 1941 Chrysler (“The Duchess’) and her sporty 1990 Chrysler LeBaron convertible.
Rose had a way of seeing into the depths of people to find what made their hearts the happiest and speaking to that. She was never short on wisdom, advice, laughter, or sending handwritten notes of encouragement and made it a priority to be at family events no matter how far she needed to travel.
Rose was very proud of her Rettstatt and Trego lineage. Her sixth great grandfather, Captain William Trego, was a ship builder and an early Pennsylvania settler arriving in Philadelphia around 1682, along with William Penn, founder of Pennsylvania. Her second great grandfather, Immanuel Rettstatt was an early Germanic settler of Westmoreland County, PA.
She is survived by a son Donald F. Foley, Jr. (Debbie), and daughters Deborah D. Meyer and Elizabeth L. Foley of Mesa, Mrs. Rebecca R. Sheehan (Brian), of North Easton, MA, and Mrs. Naomi Pennington (Gale) of Durango, CO., grandchildren Rebecca R. Dennis-Meyer (Chris), Dr. Monica R. Meyer (fiancé David Reyes), Sophie N. Foley, Frank B. Foley, Shelby R. Foley, Brenton J. Sheehan (Erin), Erin G. Tatro (Ahren), Dr. Kelly J. Sheehan (Frank Kalman), Christina H. Carr, Gerry M. Carr, Matthew S. Carr, Ashley D. Godfrey (Joshua), Brett C. Foley, Cody C. Smith, and 13 great grandchildren, and many nieces, nephews, neighbors, and friends.
She was predeceased by her husband, a daughter, Stephanie Jean Carr, her two brothers Lucien H. (“Sonny”) Rettstatt and Carroll B. Rettstatt, who died in service to their country during WWII, and her two sisters Naomi R. Rettstatt and Ruth G. Drish.
Her family would like to express their appreciation to the visiting nurses from Hospice of the West who provided excellent care and to Pastor A. Pitters for his weekly visits and spiritual support.
The funeral will be private and there will be no calling hours. Burial will be in the Canaan, NY cemetery at the convenience of the family. A celebration of Rose’s life is being planned at which time family and friends will be able to attend this special service.
Funeral arrangements are being handled by A Wise Choice Cremation & Funeral Services, Mesa, AZ.