Riki June (Rhule) Albert, 61, of Battle Creek, Michigan passed peacefully at her home in the presence of her loved ones on Saturday, February 3rd, 2024. She was under the exceptional care of the nurses and physicians of Bronson Hospital (Battle Creek) and Centrica Care Navigators, as well as her children and beloved friends.
Riki was born on the 19th of November 1962, to Robert and Loyce (Leider) Rhule in Alamosa, Colorado. She was the youngest of four children, having had a hearing impairment from birth. Her formative years were spent exploring the beauty of nature, riding horses, and traveling to see family in her mother’s Pontiac convertible. She attended Cheyenne Mountain High School, graduating in 1982. Shortly after graduating, while cruising the strip with some girlfriends, she would meet the love of her life, Matthew Albert, to whom she was wed on July 10th, 1983. In 1984 she gave birth to her first son (Mark) and would spend the next few years bringing two more wonderful boys (Taylor and Travis) into the world. The Albert family would relocate to Battle Creek, Michigan in 1987 and become lifelong residents.
Riki attended Wright Beauty Academy, earning a certificate in cosmetology, but would find her professional passion in the care and education of children. She would serve as a volunteer parent, assisting the teachers at the schools her boys attended, creating friendships and bonds with faculty and staff that would last a lifetime. She eventually became a staff member at a local Montessori Pre-school (Adventurous Beginnings for Children) and finally found her home as a teachers-aide at St. Joseph Catholic School, dedicating almost 24 years of loving service. Over her career she also became involved in the deaf community, learning and teaching American Sign Language, as well as serving as an interpreter for community programs.
Riki tragically lost her husband on September 22nd, 2003, in a car accident, but persevered, never re-marrying. In her leisure time she was a classic car enthusiast and showcased her small fleet at local car shows, earning multiple honors and titles. Her love for horses led her to finally achieve a dream of owning a Clydesdale (Charm) and a Haflinger (Matty), whom she spent hours riding though the picturesque landscapes of the Great Lakes State. She became deeply spiritual, sharing her love and passion for life with the world. She would spend many hours meditating, journaling, and manifesting the love, positivity, and gratitude that defined the person she was. Her talents in art (a gift she received from her mother) created many beautiful pieces that decorated her home and captured her creativity and unique perspectives.
She is preceded in death by her mother, father, and husband. Surviving her in death are her mother-in-law, Barbara (Hazel) Albert. Her sons, Mark, Taylor, and Travis. Her brothers and sister, Robert Rhule, Randal Rhule, and Rochelle (Rhule) Mayhugh. Her daughters-in-law, Tracy (Klein) Albert and Shannon (Klein) Albert, and her grandchildren, Juleah, Ava, Jovin, Evelyn (Bates), and Matthew.
A celebration of life will be held on Friday, February 9th at 1100 a.m. at St. Joseph Catholic Church (guests to be received by the family beginning at 10:00 a.m.) at 61 N. 23rd St., Battle Creek, Michigan 49015. She will be interred at a private graveside service at Floral Lawn Memorial Gardens next to her beloved husband for her eternal rest.
The service for Riki at St. Joseph will be livestreamed on St. Joseph Catholic Church Battle Creek, MI Facebook Page.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Battle Creek Areas Catholic Schools Foundation at https://bcacs.org/donate/ or donations may be mailed to 63 North 24th St., Battle Creek, MI 49015.
Arrangements by Farley Estes Dowdle Funeral Cremation Preneed Care. Personal messages for the family may be placed here at www.farleyestesdowdle.com.