In Memory of




Obituary for Rita Fernandico Tabanao

Rita Fernandico Tabanao 81,

It is with a heavy heart and great sadness that the Tabanao ohana announces the passing of their loving mother/grandmother, Rita Fernandico Tabanao of Kahului. She passed away peacefully at home surrounded by her loving family on July 10th, 2020 at the age of 81. She was under the care of her family and Island’s Hospice. Rita was born in Baybay, Leyte, Philippines on June 21st, 1939.

She emigrated from the Philippines in 1968 and worked at various hotels in the hospitality industry. Her first job was at the Iao Needle Hotel in Iao. After a few years she worked at the Maalaea Surf then helped launch the opening of the Wailea Beach Hotel, which later became the Renaissance Wailea Beach Hotel. She retired from there after working in the housekeeping department from 1978 – 2005. In the 80’s and 90’s she also owned and operated a jewelry business (RMJ Jewelry) and worked various part time jobs. She was very industrious and worked very hard to provide for her family in Hawaii and the Philippines.

She was a proud mother and grandmother who cared for her family very much. She loved gardening, cooking, traveling, singing karaoke, shopping, playing cards, watching Wheel of Fortune, spending time with family and friends, and having fellowship with the Lord. She also had a deep passion for shoreline fishing. She was a longtime member of the Santo Nino Club of Maui, ILWU Pensioner’s Club, and various clubs throughout the years. She was a social butterfly who was very loving and friendly to everyone she crossed paths with.

She is survived by her 2 daughter’s, Maria (Harrison) Aranaydo and Judy Michelle (Reynaldo) Lapuebla; 6 grandchildren, Reynelle (Alston) Viernes, Reychelle Lapuebla, Renee Lapuebla, Ryan Lapuebla, Tabatha (Jordan) Oliveros, Tiare (Judd Sato III) Aranaydo; 6 great grandchildren, Hezekiah Viernes, Aleia Viernes, Ayzen Viernes, Kymani DeMattos, Myles Oliveros and Tailoa Sato; sister Uldarica Fernandico Verterra.

She is predeceased by her beloved husband, Demetrio Tabanao; parents, German and Maximina Fernandico; stepmother Merenciana Fernandico; brothers, Benigno Fernandico, Copriano Fernandico, Arcolano Fernandico; sister Zoila Fernandico

Although she is no longer here, she will continue to live in the hearts and minds of all her family, friends and relatives. We will remember her kindness, enthusiasm, generosity, selflessness, and infectious smile that she always had on her face. We will greatly miss her presence and distinct laughter, however, we rejoice and take comfort and peace knowing that she is at her true home in the presence of our Lord, and all the Angels and Saints.

Wake and services honoring Rita will be held at Norman’s Mortuary, and Mass at St.Theresa Church. Please call Michelle at 808-385-0678 for details and more information.

Her burial will be held at Maui Memorial Park in Wailuku where she will be laid to rest next to her husband.