Born in Valley City, Rita (Sailer) Brooks was the eldest of six children born to John and Ellen Sailer. She attended schools in Medina, and graduated from high school in 1938. During World War II, she was employed by Goodyear Aircraft as a riveter in the cramped fuselage of fighter planes. After World War II, she and her husband, Max Horton, raised three daughters in Medina. In 1959, Rita moved to Santa Barbara, California. Her career included 20 years at the Santa Barbara Medical Clinic and many years at Santa Barbara City College, where she retired.
Rita died two days before her 94th birthday after a very brief illness. She prided herself in having never been sick most of her life.
She is survived by her three daughters, Linda Bullard (Gary) of Sacramento, California, Karen Benjamin (William) of Santa Barbara, California and Kathleen Horton of Santa Paula, California. She is also survived by six grandchildren, Deborah Tennial, Jeffrey Horton, Kristian Sorensen, Sarah Benjamin, Lisa Benjamin and Alexandra Benjamin; four great-grandchildren, Michael Malanoski, Bradley Malanoski, Jennifer Malanoski and Logan Sorensen; and one great-great-grandchild, Michael Malanoski. Rita is also survived by a brother, Michael Sailer of Sarasota, Florida and Mary Davis of Elyria.
She will be greatly missed by family and friends.