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Celebrating the life of
Loretto "Retta" Buttimer
October 22, 1942 - June 24, 2018
Services under the direction of:
Fox & Weeks Funeral Directors, Hodgson Chapel
912-352-7200
  • Family Will Receive Friends
  • 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. - Friday, June 29, 2018
  • Fox & Weeks Funeral Directors, Hodgson Chapel
  • 7200 Hodgson Memorial Drive (Map)
    Savannah, Georgia 31406

  • 912-352-7200
  • Rosary will be recited
  • 6:30pm - Friday, June 29, 2018
  • Fox & Weeks Funeral Directors, Hodgson Chapel
  • 7200 Hodgson Memorial Drive (Map)
    Savannah, Georgia 31406

  • 912-352-7200
  • Mass of Christian Burial
  • 1:00pm - Saturday, June 30, 2018
  • St. James Catholic Church
  • 8412 Whitfield Ave (Map)
    Savannah, Georgia 31406

  • 912-355-1523
  • Private Inurnment
  • Catholic Cemetery
  • 1720 Wheaton Street (Map)
    Savannah, Georgia 31404

  • 912-201-4075

I'm sorry for your loss. It is never easy to lose someone we love. The Bible gives a sure hope of a resurrection. The scripture found at Isaiah 25:8 tells us that one day soon God will put in end to death. Please visit jw.org for more comforting information on this subject.

Kelly, Pooler, Ga

I'm sorry for your loss. It is never easy to lose someone we love. The Bible gives a sure hope of a resurrection. The scripture found at Isaiah 25:8 tells us that one day soon God will put in end to death. Please visit jw.org for more comforting information on this subject.

Kelly, Pooler, Ga

My condolences to Mrs. Retta's family and friends. May you find comfort in God's word. "And the last enemy, death, will be brought to nothing."- 1 Corinthians 15:26

B.B, , Ga

Mrs. Sanfilippo, Katie and Family, I am so sorry for your loss. Sending prayers for peace and strength your way. Sincerely,

Gina Koncul Robinson, Savannah, Ga

I am so sorry for your loss. She was a sweet wonderful woman. I know you will miss her so much. Our thoughts and prayers are with you Brian and your whole family.

Tyler Moynihan & Family, Redmond, WA

Maureen - Please accept my condolences on the transition of your mother. She sounds like an extraordinary woman.

Kevin Gilson, Ann Arbor, MI

I truly loved working with Retta at the food pantry. She was so kind to so many. She will be missed. Lori R Haynes

Lori R. Haynes, Macon, GA

One of the sweetest of cousins, Lovely child of loving parents. Always called me Mr Boo....for 60 plus years so bye for now from Mr Boo

Terence Powers Jr, Fairfax County, VA

Retta has been my friend since the day I entered 4th grade at Blessed Sacrament School. After we graduated from St. Vincents, our paths took different turns but whenever we met it, it was like we had seen each other yesterday. Retta's parents gave their daughters a wonderful example of how to nurture people and each of them: Elizabeth, Retta, Kathleen, and Nora carried on that wonderful gift. One always left the Powers home refreshed and Retta took that "Southern Savannah Irish" gift with her wherever she lived. A few of her SVA friends had lunch at her new home only a few days before she died. As usual, she had already turned her house into HER home with her touches. When I think of Retta, I always see her beautiful smile which encompassed everyone she saw. Edward Markham's OUTWITTED contains a line that reminds me of Retta: “He drew a circle that shut me out- Heretic , rebel, a thing to flout. But love and I had the wit to win: We drew a circle and took him In ! Retta took everyone she met IN and made all feel welcome. I can only imagine the welcome she received when she arrived in heaven!

Sheila Winders, Savannah, Ga

Retta showered our recently moved family from Florida with love, kindness and generosity to incredible length . She was a clear example of God’s love to all human beings that crossed her path. Her memory will be with us “until we meet again.” Our sincere condolences to her children and family.

Ricardo A. Diaz family, Redwood City, California

We wish to send our love and condolences to Retta’s family. Our hearts go out to you for your loss. We remember Retta for how she welcomed us so warmly and celebrated with us during Kathleen and Murray’s courtship and wedding. In a sea of people at a party, Retta would circulate and when she got to you, she would introduce you to the people around you, bringing out personal details so that you could connect with them. She widened the circle to bring everyone in. Over the years, we became part of Retta’s extended family and were able to celebrate with her through the milestones of her children, including holidays, summer parties, marriages, business celebrations, and grandchildren. We hope your memories of Retta’s love and good times carry you through the sadness of her passing. Much love, Alice, Noni, and Cassie Roblin

Alice, Noni and Cassie Roblin, Palo Alto, CA

My condolences to the family. May you find comfort in the scripture at Revelation 21:4 and the website jw. org.

Niecy, Savannah, GA

We love you all so much, and will miss our precious friend and sister in the Lord, Retta Farley Buttimer. God bless you all! Betty and Bill Mohlenbrock and Kem Mohlenbrock Graham

Mohlenbrock Family, San Diego, CA

We are all so blessed by the beautiful and caring life of Retta. We know she is enjoying her new home in heaven. God bless all of you and know she is so happy and at peace. Love and prayers. Hank, Marion, Barbara Herndon

Hank & Marion Clark, Macon, GA

May the friends and family of Mrs. Buttimer find comfort in the Bible's promises that soon, "all those in the memorial tombs will hear his voice and come out" (John 5:28, 29), and "[God] will wipe out every tear from [our] eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore." (Revelation 21:3, 4). We can also rest assured that God 'will swallow up death forever, and He will wipe away the tears from all faces...for He himself has spoken it.' (Isaiah 25:8) https://www.jw.org/en/bible-teachings/questions/about-life-and-death/

Paulaina, , CT

Loretto “Retta” Buttimer

Mrs. Loretto “Retta” Powers Buttimer, 75, passed away Sunday, June 24, 2018. Funeral services will be conducted Saturday, June 30, at 1 p.m. in St. James Catholic Church, 8412 Whitefield Ave., Savannah, GA 31406. The family will receive friends at the church following the service. A visitation and rosary will be held Friday, June 29, from 5:00–7:00 pm, at Fox & Weeks Hodgson Chapel, 7200 Hodgson Memorial Dr., Savannah, GA 31406.

Mrs. Buttimer was a native of Savannah and spent several years in the San Francisco Bay Area and in Milledgeville, Georgia. She was lovingly known to friends and family simply, elegantly as Retta, and so shall be referred to as Retta here. Named for her grandmothers Gertrude and Loretto, she was the daughter of Richard J. Powers and Margaret Bradley Powers. Mr. Powers was an insurance salesman and a native of Savannah and his wife was a Savannahian whose early years were spent in the Panama Canal Zone. They raised her and her three cherished sisters, Elizabeth, Kathleen, and Nora, on E. 55th Street among her family’s strongly rooted Irish Catholic community. She attended Blessed Sacrament School and St. Vincent’s Academy, where she made many lifelong friends, played on the basketball team, and was known for her intellectual curiosity and kindness. Retta’s formative years included summers at her family’s 12th Street Tybee Island home surrounded by her 48 first cousins and many aunts, uncles, and elders. Reflecting on where she was from, a life shared at Tybee would remain an inspiration.

Retta attended St. Louis University and earned her masters of social work. She trained as a hospitalist at urban hospitals. In St. Louis, she met Peter “Pete” J. Farley, of Fishkill, New York, a medical student training in emergency surgery. Much humor was spread among her Savannah family about a Yankee joining the clan. Upon graduation the two wed at Blessed Sacrament Church in Savannah, Georgia, and continued their marriage for 39 years.

In the late sixties, after a brief stay in Mystic, Connecticut, she and her husband established a life in Oahu, Hawaii, where he served in the U.S. Navy during the Vietnam era as the medical and diving officer aboard a nuclear submarine. Miles from home, this Savannah girl easily took to island life, buying their first house while her husband was on the submarine, working as a social worker on the navy base, and exploring Hawaii with visitors from home. She loved to recall how she sent a Morse Code message to Pete on the submarine to “start knitting baby booties.” Their first daughter, Kathleen Anne Farley, was born in May of 1969.

In 1971, Retta and Pete began what can only be described as an extraordinary chapter in the San Francisco Bay Area. After famously moving little Kathleen to The Glass Slipper Inn in Mountain View, California, for a year, Retta set up a life for them as a homemaker connecting to many lifelong friends while Pete attended Stanford Business School. They settled in Orinda, California. Together they built a life of bold entrepreneurship, becoming founders and funders of start-ups spanning the fields of biotechnology, healthcare, E-commerce, electronics, and even a custom boat company.

Retta embraced a life of motherhood, the role that meant the most to her. 1976 ushered in what she lovingly referred to as “the tired years” when Brian Patrick, Shannon Marie, and Maureen Renee arrived within four years. Retta was an extraordinary mother, modeling a love of learning, reading, adventuring, and being of service to her children. She and Pete raised their four children in the Santa Maria parish, modeling an active faith in God. She worked tirelessly on behalf of their educations from pre-school co-ops on through, volunteering and supporting especially the Head-Royce School of Oakland, California, Sacred Heart Prep of Atherton, California, and Georgetown University, where all four attended.

Savannah was always close to her heart and she remained thoroughly connected to her friends and family there by creating a gathering place on the Back River of Tybee Island. The Farley home became a nexus of family reunions, holiday celebrations, boat trips and crab offs, river sittin’, and “just visitin’” on the porch. It became a lifestyle and way of life that strongly bonded them. Retta was up for nothing short of “a cast of thousands” joining her for dinner, for a week, or for the whole summer. Her generosity is unparalleled.

She was a consummate hostess, and had a special fondness for welcoming teenagers, babies, cousins of cousins, business travelers, and old friends and new into her home. She loved people. Knowing them, doing family histories off the cuff with them (“gotta do my kin-to’s!”), asking them what they love and feeding them. She was a wonderful cook, often smiling as she recalled how all she needed was a headcount by four to make a meal for twenty-two. Being of service to others, connecting them to opportunity and to higher ways of seeing or doing was her gift.

Throughout her life she contributed to causes that spoke to her values and faith. She was a career philanthropist, eager to lend her sharp intellect, her resources, and her talents. She was a leading supporter of Lucille Salter Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford University, a trustee for UCSF Endocrinology, and was a smiling face greeting people at the St. Peter Claver food pantry in Macon, Georgia.

Adventures were a part of her life, making her resilient and no stranger to fortitude. The world was an open book, traveling to the Philippines, Russia, Argentina, throughout the Caribbean and beyond, though most dear to her was visiting Ireland with her mother. When her children were teenagers, she drove fourteen of them by herself to Disney World. She took on projects most only dream of. In the nineties, she and her family designed and built their dream home based on Frank Lloyd Wright’s Falling Water. In her late fifties, she enrolled in a master’s program and followed a calling as a hospice social worker. With compassion and an open heart, she cared for hundreds of families all over Georgia, truly becoming God’s hands.

On extending love and inspiring others, the sweetest, most exciting surprise of her lifetime was reconnecting with her first love, Richard “Dick” Buttimer, at a service in Savannah. Dick described the meeting as two souls rising to reunite then leaving the church bonded together. For eleven years, the two embraced true happiness and created a beautiful marriage together in Milledgeville, Georgia, where he was an attorney. Their life together was filled with many friendships in the Savannah Irish community. They had an enthusiasm for attending Georgia football games with his kids, volunteering at St. Peter Claver’s, enjoying their nine grandchildren, and best of all, laughing and loving. Retta cared for Dick during a brief illness and he sadly passed away in 2014.

In 2017, Retta returned to Savannah, joyous about retiring among her Powers and Buttimer family, and was received by countless family and dear friends. Her deep gratitude was known by her family and friends, all of whom she made a point to thank and appreciate. That’s just who she was.

She was a mother to all who knew her. She is survived by her children, Kathleen Farley (Murray Roblin); Brian Farley (Debbie); Shannon Farley; and Maureen McMahon (Dr. Jeffrey McMahon); stepchildren, Dr. Richard Buttimer, Jr. (Dr. Shirley Wright), Bryan Buttimer, and Kathyrn Quinn (Ralph); grandchildren, Finn, Kai, Patrick, Teagan, Emma, Kiera, Fiona, Owen, and Maeve; sisters, Elizabeth Ware (Michael) and Kathleen Sanfilippo (Robert); in-laws, Hank Richardson, Anthony DiLeo, Sr., Anthony Buttimer, Sr., and Sr. Helen Marie Buttimer; and many beloved nieces and nephews.

She is preceded in death by her husband, Richard J. Buttimer; parents, Richard J. Powers and Margaret Bradley Powers; sister, Nora Richardson; and a husband, Dr. Peter J. Farley. She was a member of St. James Catholic Church in Savannah.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to St. Vincent’s Academy, 207 East Liberty St., Savannah, GA 31401.

SHARE YOUR CONDOLENCES

  

GUEST BOOK

I'm sorry for your loss. It is never easy to lose someone we love. The Bible gives a sure hope of a resurrection. The scripture found at Isaiah 25:8 tells us that one day soon God will put in end to death. Please visit jw.org for more comforting information on this subject.

Kelly, Pooler, Ga

I'm sorry for your loss. It is never easy to lose someone we love. The Bible gives a sure hope of a resurrection. The scripture found at Isaiah 25:8 tells us that one day soon God will put in end to death. Please visit jw.org for more comforting information on this subject.

Kelly, Pooler, Ga

My condolences to Mrs. Retta's family and friends. May you find comfort in God's word. "And the last enemy, death, will be brought to nothing."- 1 Corinthians 15:26

B.B, , Ga

Mrs. Sanfilippo, Katie and Family, I am so sorry for your loss. Sending prayers for peace and strength your way. Sincerely,

Gina Koncul Robinson, Savannah, Ga

I am so sorry for your loss. She was a sweet wonderful woman. I know you will miss her so much. Our thoughts and prayers are with you Brian and your whole family.

Tyler Moynihan & Family, Redmond, WA

Maureen - Please accept my condolences on the transition of your mother. She sounds like an extraordinary woman.

Kevin Gilson, Ann Arbor, MI

I truly loved working with Retta at the food pantry. She was so kind to so many. She will be missed. Lori R Haynes

Lori R. Haynes, Macon, GA

One of the sweetest of cousins, Lovely child of loving parents. Always called me Mr Boo....for 60 plus years so bye for now from Mr Boo

Terence Powers Jr, Fairfax County, VA

Retta has been my friend since the day I entered 4th grade at Blessed Sacrament School. After we graduated from St. Vincents, our paths took different turns but whenever we met it, it was like we had seen each other yesterday. Retta's parents gave their daughters a wonderful example of how to nurture people and each of them: Elizabeth, Retta, Kathleen, and Nora carried on that wonderful gift. One always left the Powers home refreshed and Retta took that "Southern Savannah Irish" gift with her wherever she lived. A few of her SVA friends had lunch at her new home only a few days before she died. As usual, she had already turned her house into HER home with her touches. When I think of Retta, I always see her beautiful smile which encompassed everyone she saw. Edward Markham's OUTWITTED contains a line that reminds me of Retta: “He drew a circle that shut me out- Heretic , rebel, a thing to flout. But love and I had the wit to win: We drew a circle and took him In ! Retta took everyone she met IN and made all feel welcome. I can only imagine the welcome she received when she arrived in heaven!

Sheila Winders, Savannah, Ga

Retta showered our recently moved family from Florida with love, kindness and generosity to incredible length . She was a clear example of God’s love to all human beings that crossed her path. Her memory will be with us “until we meet again.” Our sincere condolences to her children and family.

Ricardo A. Diaz family, Redwood City, California

We wish to send our love and condolences to Retta’s family. Our hearts go out to you for your loss. We remember Retta for how she welcomed us so warmly and celebrated with us during Kathleen and Murray’s courtship and wedding. In a sea of people at a party, Retta would circulate and when she got to you, she would introduce you to the people around you, bringing out personal details so that you could connect with them. She widened the circle to bring everyone in. Over the years, we became part of Retta’s extended family and were able to celebrate with her through the milestones of her children, including holidays, summer parties, marriages, business celebrations, and grandchildren. We hope your memories of Retta’s love and good times carry you through the sadness of her passing. Much love, Alice, Noni, and Cassie Roblin

Alice, Noni and Cassie Roblin, Palo Alto, CA

My condolences to the family. May you find comfort in the scripture at Revelation 21:4 and the website jw. org.

Niecy, Savannah, GA

We love you all so much, and will miss our precious friend and sister in the Lord, Retta Farley Buttimer. God bless you all! Betty and Bill Mohlenbrock and Kem Mohlenbrock Graham

Mohlenbrock Family, San Diego, CA

We are all so blessed by the beautiful and caring life of Retta. We know she is enjoying her new home in heaven. God bless all of you and know she is so happy and at peace. Love and prayers. Hank, Marion, Barbara Herndon

Hank & Marion Clark, Macon, GA

May the friends and family of Mrs. Buttimer find comfort in the Bible's promises that soon, "all those in the memorial tombs will hear his voice and come out" (John 5:28, 29), and "[God] will wipe out every tear from [our] eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore." (Revelation 21:3, 4). We can also rest assured that God 'will swallow up death forever, and He will wipe away the tears from all faces...for He himself has spoken it.' (Isaiah 25:8) https://www.jw.org/en/bible-teachings/questions/about-life-and-death/

Paulaina, , CT


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