Rita Joyce Jones – Manchester

Rita Joyce Jones, 80, of Manchester, passed away on Monday, November 7, 2022, at her home.

She was born on May 2, 1942, at home on the farm in rural Strawberry Point, the daughter of Arthur and Florence (Kellogg) Carpenter. Rita attended school in Lamont, graduating with the Lamont High School Class of 1960. In June of 1962, Rita was united in marriage to LaVerne Jones. Three children were born to this union. During this time, Rita attended and graduated from Upper Iowa University in 1963. Rita taught business classes at Madrid High School in Madrid, Iowa. She also studied library science at UNI and was a librarian at Starmont High School. Rita was a member of the International Guild of Candle Artisans (IGCA) and participated in their conventions and workshops. She was known as the Candle Lady. She was also an active participant in the Northeast Iowa Saddle Club (NEISCA) and enjoyed showing Quarter Horses.

Survivors include her husband of 60 years, LaVerne Jones of Manchester; her three children, Cindia Durnil of Cedar Rapids, Michael Jones of Wisconsin, and Chris Jones of Missouri; four grandchildren, Katelyn Durnil, Austin Durnil, Kyle Jones, and Brooke Jones; one sister, Kay (Douglas) Sage of Lamont; a brother, Ron (Deb) Carpenter of Lamont; and several nieces and nephews.

Rita was preceded in death by her parents; son-in-law, William Durnil; sister, Wanda Batchelder; and a nephew, Scott Sage.

Online condolences may be sent to

Memorial Service: 11:00 a.m., on Saturday, November 12, 2022, at Leonard-Muller Funeral in Manchester, with Pastor Ruth Ann Scott officiating. Visitation: 9:00 to 11:00 a.m., on Saturday, November 12, 2022, at Leonard-Muller Funeral Home in Manchester. There will be no inurnment. Leonard-Muller Funeral Home in Manchester is serving the family of Rita Jones.

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