We are deeply sorry for your loss - the staff at Bridges - Cameron Funeral Home
Donna Lee Rice, age 71, of Sanford, passed away, in her sleep, at her home, on Thursday, the 26th of May 2022.
Donna was born in Hartford, Connecticut on February 2, 1951, to the late Robert and Marie Fritz. A true “Daddy’s girl”, Donna remained in her father’s care after her parents divorced. She attended high school in Connecticut and after graduating spent two years living in Germany exploring and absorbing what contributed to her unique outlook on life. Married in 1979 to, the late, Richard Pulito, Donna had two children, Kathryn and Michael Pulito. In 1994, Donna remarried to her best friend and her life’s love, Phillip Rice. In 1996, Donna obtained her Associates Degree in Computer Technologies from Texas Tech University. And in 1999, she and her family moved to Sanford, North Carolina. Her time in Sanford was spent raising her teenage children before beginning her career with Belk as the Head of Visual Merchandising.
In her later years, Donna became best known for her bubbly and quirky personality in attendance at weekly yoga and water aerobics classes at the Sanford YMCA where she carved lasting friendships with her peers. Outside of her aerobic enjoyments, Donna enjoyed good music, a good laugh, a good cup of coffee and a better glass of wine. She loved her many travels spent with her husband to the beach. Yet none of those things compared to her love of spending time with her family and grandchildren.
Donna was a creative, loving and peaceful soul with a gentle light that matched her genuine spirit. Always encouraging others to appreciate the uniqueness of every living thing, she appreciated beauty in things that others would often miss. Always marching to the beat of her own drum, she knew perfection was nothing more than perception and she made no apologies for who she was. She could always be counted on for lending a shoulder to cry on and an attentive, listening ear. Her wise responses proved nothing less than the wisdom of an “old soul”. She will indeed be a light that is both greatly missed and forever cherished in the minds and hearts of those that loved her.
Donna is survived by her loving husband, Phillip Rice of Sanford; daughter, Kathryn Pulito (Kendrick Toomer) of Sanford; son Michael Pulito (Haley Judd-Pulito) of Greensboro; stepson, Bradley Rice (Courtney Rice), of Lubbock, Texas; brother, Robert Fritz of Tennessee, and grandchildren, Ayden Judd-Pulito, Lucas Riddle, Giovanna Toomer, Kendall Toomer, and Hayleigh Rice.
A memorial service for Donna’s life will be held on Saturday, June 4th at noon at Bridges-Cameron Funeral Home.