Rita M. Salamun, 64
June 4, 1953 — Dec. 8, 2017

Rita M. Salamun, 64 Rita Margaret Salamun (née Heim) of Belgium, passed into eternal grace on the morning of Dec. 8, 2017, with her only child. Michele Salamun, by her side.

Rita was born into this world on June 4, 1953, to her late parents Arthur B. and Margaret Heim (née Schauble). Rita was also preceded in death by her father-in-law, Peter J. Salamun, sister-in-law Cathy Heim (née Tokie Shimizu) and brother-inlaw Everett McDaniel. She is survived by her siblings, Gerald (Connie), Arthur F. (Marsha), Arlene McDaniel (née Heim) and granddaughter Adeana Salamun. Further survived by nieces, nephews, cousins, other relatives and many friends.

Rita was raised in Grafton, above her father’s business, Heim’s Shoe Store, where she began working as a teen. She graduated from Grafton High School in 1971, married Charles P. Salamun shortly after and moved to Milwaukee. In 1972, she welcomed a daughter into her arms and soon returned to Grafton. She worked for 20 years repairing shoes, jackets, bags, tents, flags and other various items for the community.

She began volunteering for a women’s shelter, which awoke a new passion in her and compelled her to return to school for a social work degree. She took great pride in getting both her undergraduate and graduate degrees later in life. She was a fantastic therapist who used her life experiences to relate to others with compassion and empathy. The work she did with troubled youth and their families was extremely gratifying to her. She cared about the youths as if they were her own. and the families were better for their experience with her. In her youth, she was an accomplished seamstress, having sewn her own wedding dress. She spent many years improving her technique in stained glass. She loved to travel, tent camp, vacation to and explore new places, take trips on her motorcycle and attend various motorsport events.

Later in life she became a staunch advocate of women’s and children's rights and the rights of people with disabilities. She was an intelligent, curious woman who loved traveling and exploring American history. She loved the arts and music; exploring her own creativity through poetry, jewelry making, decoupage and papier mache. She was constantly on the lookout for things she could up-cycle into something more beautiful or with a new purpose. She also took on many woodworking and home remodeling projects without reservation. She was always looking for her next challenge and rose to it every time.

She was a loving, nurturing mother and friend who inspired others to push social boundaries and themselves. Her gentle spirit will be dearly missed by all who knew her.

Services will be held Saturday, Dec. 16 at Friedens Church, 454 N. Milwaukee St., Port Washington, WI. Visitation to begin at 10:30 a.m. with service at 12:30 p.m., followed by fellowship. Interment will be 3 p.m. at St. Joseph Cemetery in Grafton. In lieu of flowers, memorials to the family are appreciated. For online condolences please go to www.muellerfuneralhome.com