Lillian A. Wheeler

Lillian A. Wheeler, 103, of Wakefield, passed away peacefully at the South Kingstown Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, Saturday, December 5, 2020.  She was the beloved wife of the late Thomas J. Wheeler.

Born in Plainfield, New Jersey on February 8, 1917.  She was the daughter of the late Samuel O. Rush and Leona (Mattell) Rush.  Lillian attended Averett (College) University, in Danville, Virginia.  The family moved to Perryville, RI in 1946.  Lillian spent 29 years working in the South Kingstown Town Clerks Office in Wakefield with Foster Sheldon, Town Clerk.  Prior to her retirement in 1982, she worked for 5 years as Executive Secretary for the South Kingstown Chief of Police.

Lillian loved to travel and particularly enjoyed visiting the many historical areas of the United States, including Hawaii, Alaska, Western and Mid-Western States, and all of the Eastern Seaboard States.  Foreign travel included Canada, the United Kingdom, and Jamaica.  She tended a large garden and canned and/or froze many types of vegetables, and made various types of jams and jellies to share with family and friends

She was an avid Red Sox and Patriot’s fan.  She enjoyed reading, playing the piano, and many different craft types, including toile painting and decoupage.  She particularly excelled in embroidery, and was awarded several Blue Ribbons at the Washington County Fair for her embroidery work.

Lillian supported her community.  Until she was no longer able to drive, she delivered “Meal on Wheels” in South Kingstown and Charlestown.  She was an active member of the South County AARP chapter, and she enjoyed regular trips to the Wakefield YMCA to swim with her friends.

Lillian was the loving sister of the late Jeannette R. Webb and brother of the late Samuel O. Rush, Jr.

Lillian is survived by her children, Thomas H. Wheeler (son) and Bonnie D. Wheeler (spouse) of Wakefield, RI and Ruth Ann Barker (daughter) of Fayetteville, NC.

Lillian has 5 Grand Children, Kristin (Wheeler) Willsey of Harwood, MD; Brandon Wheeler of Harwood, MD; Thomas P. Barker of Charlotte, NC; Rebecca (Barker) Easton of Fayetteville, NC; Angela (Wheeler) Flynn of Woonsocket, RI.

Lillian has seven Great Grandchildren.

Services will be private.  In lieu of flowers donations in her name may be made to the South Kingstown Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, Attn:  Activities Department Fund, 2115 South County Trail, West Kingston, RI 02892 or Perryville Cemetery Association, Attn: Treasurer, 330 Metaterraine Ave, Wakefield, RI 02879.  For guest book and condolences please visit

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