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Sister Timea I. Riszt, native of Hungary, active in social service

April 6, 1928 – Nov. 18, 2014

Sister Timea Ilona Riszt, SSS, who worked with Catholic Charities for more than 20 years, died Tuesday in the Clarence Residence of the Sisters of St. Joseph after a long illness. She was 86.

Born Ilona Riszt in Hungary, she worked in a laboratory after receiving her high school diploma. She was a group leader in the National Association of Catholic Young Women and entered the novitiate of the Sisters of Social Service, underground, where she received her religious name.

After the 1956 Hungarian revolution, she and other novices were asked by their superiors to leave Hungary and join their community in Buffalo. They arrived here in 1957 after ministering to the children in their refugee camp in Austria.

Sister Timea continued her religious training in Buffalo and made her first vows in 1959.

Her first assignment was in Syracuse, where she was dietitian and group mother for boys in the House of Providence, which served emotionally scarred children.

After two years as coordinator for the House of Providence house in Buffalo, in 1970 she was assigned to Akron, Ohio, where she worked with a foster parent program and was receptionist at St. Thomas Hospital.

Returning to Buffalo in 1974, she earned a gerontology certificate from the University at Buffalo and worked with Catholic Charities as a social worker and a group leader at the Senior Day Program.

She also was involved with the Telephone Assurance Program in conjunction with the United Way. She retired in 1996.

In her religious community, she served as house moderator at several locations and local treasurer. She was a member of the District (Provincial) Council for nine years.

Talented in arts and crafts, she also enjoyed decorating, gardening, photography and baking.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 10 a.m. Saturday in Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church, 1035 Delaware Ave. at West Utica Street.

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