Obituary: Rita E. Niekrash, 90, mother of Wiltonian

Rita E. (Kosciusko) Niekrash, 90, died peacefully Monday, Oct. 3, 2016 in the Avery Heights Skilled Nursing Center in Hartford. Her husband of 68 years, Dr. Michael Niekrash, died in June 2016.

She was born and raised on a dairy farm in Grafton, Mass., a daughter of Edward and Stefania (Kozlowski) Kosciusko. For most of her adult life, she lived in West Hartford, Conn., where she raised her family. She also worked for many years as the office manager in the dental practice of her husband in Hartford, Conn. Mrs. Niekrash was a graduate of Clark University, majoring in economics. She was a member of St. Timothy’s Church in West Hartford.

Always an active person, she was particularly proud of her golfing hole in one.

“She epitomized what a mother, wife, grandmother and friend should be,” her family said. “She was nurturing, intelligent, passionate and made her family and friends comfortable and loved.”

Mrs. Niekrash was predeceased by her husband, Michael, her sisters Therese Rojcewicz and Gertrude Scanlon, and her brothers Edward Kosciusko, Joseph Kosciusko and Fred Kaye.

She is survived by her four children: Michael Niekrash and his wife Gina of Madison Conn., Christine Niekrash and her husband Bruce Koeppen of Guilford, Conn., John Niekrash and his wife Deb of Mystic, Conn., and Nancy Budd and her husband Bill of Wilton, Conn. In addition, she is survived by her 10 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be directed to Work Vessels for Vets, via Paypal at or checks can be sent to: WVFV at 591 Noank Road, Mystic, CT 06355.