Sister Rita E. Hammond (Sister Mary Esther), 84, of the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas, NE, died at Our Lady of Providence Residence in Winooski on Feb. 24.

She was born in Manhattan, New York, on Nov. 27, 1936, the daughter of Janet Agnes (McGlone) Hammond and Floyd Merton Hammond. She grew up in Windsor and attended Windsor public schools. She graduated from Windsor High School in 1954 and entered the Sisters of Mercy on Sept. 8, 1955.

Sister Hammond earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Trinity College in 1960. She continued her education earning a master’s in education in secondary science from Miami University, Ohio, in 1969.

She taught middle school science at Catholic schools in Vermont: St. Michael’s in Montpelier, St. Monica’s in Barre, Cathedral and Mater Christi in Burlington; and at Landmark College in Putney. She was principal at St. Francis Xavier School in Winooski and she served on the faculty at Mt. Carmel School in Saipan Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. She also worked in parish religious education programs in Burlington, Montpelier, St. Albans and Barre. Her ministries also included tutoring students of all ages; preparing immigrants for citizenship; and visiting inmates in correction facilities.

Sister Hammond served on several community boards including Dismas House, United Way and the National Science Teachers Association.

She taught piano, and she was the music director at Mount St. Mary Convent and at Our Lady of Providence Residence, where she frequently served as cantor and keyboardist.

Sister Hammond is survived by her brothers, John (Sylvia Heath) and Joseph (JoAnn) Hammond and their families. She also is survived by her religious community, the Sisters of Mercy. She was predeceased by her parents.

Arrangements for a Mass of Christian are yet to be announced.