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Rita Marie Jolly (Baumgardner), 62

Rita Marie Jolly (Baumgardner), 62, died on Tuesday, October 12, 2010, from a sudden heart attack in Austin, Texas.

Rita was born on Sept. 12, 1948, in Minneapolis, Minn.  She spent her childhood years in Minnesota, Montana and South Dakota and graduated from high school in Williams, Minn. in 1966.  She received a bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities in 1970 and a master’s degree in education from Michigan State University in 2002.  Rita taught at an elementary school in Mt. Horeb, Wis. before starting her family in 1980.  She and her family lived in Janesville and La Crosse, Wis. during the 1980s and ’90s.  Since 1994, she and her family have lived in Hong Kong, Amsterdam, the Netherlands, and Shanghai and Dalian in China, where she taught at various elementary schools, and was involved in social and charitable activities. She and her husband had recently moved to Austin.

She is survived by her husband, Praveen Jolly; son, Arun Jolly of New York City; daughter and son-in-law, Kiren and Michael Leeds of Berkeley, Calif.; mother, Rita Baumgardner of Chandler, Ariz.; brother and sister-in-law, Grant and Tina Baumgardner of Gilbert, Ariz.; and several aunts, uncles and other relatives in the US, Germany and Canada.  She was preceded in death by her father, Earl Baumgardner.

Her close family and friends gathered to remember her on October 16, 2010 at the Weed- Corley-Fish Funeral Home in Austin, Texas.  Her ashes will be scattered in places that she lived in and loved.  Additional memorial services are planned in Dalian, China (Oct. 24), Burlington, Ontario (Oct. 30) and La Crosse, Wis. at a later date.

Rita believed in doing the right thing and helping people. Rita’s love of children and education will be continued with a charitable trust the family is setting up in her name, which will enhance education and benefit children in China and the US. Contributions can be sent to the Rita Jolly Memorial Trust, 6817 Telluride Trail, Austin, TX 78749.

Arrangements by Weed-Corley-Fish Funeral Home South Congress, 2620 S. Congress, Austin, TX  512/442-1446.  You may view memorials at

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