Geraldine A. (Scholato) Rybaltowski, age 88, of Wilmington, Delaware passed peacefully in her home surrounded by family on Monday, July 17, 2023. She was a beloved wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother who was known for her big heart, quick wit, humor and gift of laughter. She took pride in sharing her incredible cooking talents with all who entered her home. She made friends wherever she went and carried them with her throughout her life.
Geri was born on October 18, 1936 in Wilmington, Delaware to John and Catherine Scholato. She grew up on Elm Street and graduated from Wilmington High School in 1953. After graduation she worked at Electric Hose & Rubber for several years before leaving to marry “the cutest boy on Elm Street.” On October 20, 1956 she married Joseph Rybaltowski and together they raised five children in a full and happy home.
Always energetic and hardworking, Geri started a night shift at Wilmington Trust Company while her children were in school. She was employed there for 25 years, making great friends and a lot of wonderful memories. Monthly lunches with the trust company ladies continued for more than 20 years after her retirement in 1995.
Geri and Joe were lifelong parishioners of St. Hedwig’s. They were active members of the community and devoted significant time and energy to the parish. For over 50 years, Geri was a member of the Holy Rosary Society. Each year she joined the parish ladies in the kitchen, making golabki and pierogi for the Polish Festival.
Geri loved to cook and entertain and was known to have an open door policy - family, neighbors and friends were always welcome around the kitchen table for great cake, coffee and conversation. Her favorite visitors by far, though, were her grandchildren who she loved to make laugh by retelling stories about growing up on Elm Street.
Geri is predeceased by her brothers, John “Slats” Scholato, Thomas “Dutchie” Scholato and Richard “Pinky” Scholato; her sister, Alice Kojev; and her granddaughter, Leah Zakrzewski. She is survived by her husband of 67 years, Joseph Rybaltowski; her five children, Joe Rybaltowski Jr. (Elaine), Lenny Rybaltowski (Marianne), Mark Rybaltowski (Erin), Mary Kay Taylor (Jeff), and Lori Zakrzewski; eleven grandchildren, Joey, Brian, Mark, Alyssa, Justine, Alex, Bobby, Alaina, Meaghan, Brendan, and McKenna; three great-grandchildren, Katelyn, Liam and McKayla.
Her family is grateful to AccentCare Hospice, especially Sharon and Colette, who went above and beyond caring for Geri over the past year.
Family and friends are invited to visit at St. Hedwig Church, 408 S. Harrison Street, Wilmington on Tuesday, July 25 from 9:30 – 10:45AM. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11:00AM, immediately followed by entombment in the Rosary Garden Crypt at All Saints Cemetery.