John Raymond Riggs Sr Obituary

John Raymond Riggs Sr

(June 28, 1924 - July 28, 2017)

John Raymond Riggs (93) died in on July 28, 2017 in Del Rio. Sylvia (88), his wife, died on July 31, 52 hours after John Raymond. They were sweethearts in life for 71 year and are now together in heaven forever. Thanks be to God. John Raymond Riggs was born June 28, 1924 in San Antonio and Sylvia Othella Williams was born October 23, 1928 in Iraan, Texas, then an oil boom tent city. John Raymond and his younger sister Geraldine were reared first at the Shaw Ranch and then at the Riggs Ranch both in the Carta Valley area by their parents Sterling John and Clemie Nation Riggs. John Raymond attended school in Del Rio, but left before he graduated to join the Navy and serve his country during WWII. He survived the sinking of his ship, the USS Pringle. After the war he returned to Del Rio/ Carta Valley to continue ranching with his father. Sylvia‘s parents were Gilbert Willie and Sarah “Lissie” Waldrum Williams . As a child her family including older sister Dorothy and brother Dewey moved often because her dad, a barber, followed the haircuts. After she graduated from Cotulla High School Sylvia attended Draughton’s Business School in San Antonio. Although Sylvia grew up knowing John Raymond, their romance began during her visits with Uncle Odus Waldrum who ran the Carter Valley Store. The marriages of the Waldrum family are a long story but in short John Raymond and Sylvia were non-blood cousins. They were married in Cotulla, Texas on June 22, 1946. They loved their family and were ALWAYS there for them. They are survived by daughter Pamela Ann Terrell (m. Thomas) and son JR Riggs Jr (former wife. Georgeann Lyon). Grandchildren are John Raymond III (fiancée Mary), Carlyn Riggs Lefler (m. Michael) and Sterling Terrell (m. Jessica). The seven Great Grandchildren are Walker, Masen, Shyla, Korbin , Harper, Gunnar, and Kendall. The Riggs family was active as members of First Baptist, Del Rio. John Raymond served as Usher and Deacon until his health no longer permitted. Sylvia taught in the 5 year old class forever. After he retired John Raymond was also active in distributing Bibles for the Gideons. If you would like to honor John Raymond and Sylvia consider making a donation to the Gideons. During his long life John Raymond wore many hats but his ranching hat was the closest to his heart. He seemed to relish the hard work and his “can do” attitude helped sustain him through all the harsh ups and downs and uncertainly of ranching. For a few years after WWII in addition to ranching he worked at the Ford Garage as a mechanic. He had a knack for fixing things particularly with baling wire. For three years in the midst of the horrible 1950s Texas drought, he was foreman for the Sweeney Farm and Cattle Feed Lots in El Indio, Texas. In the late 1960s, though still ranching, John Raymond worked for the Texas Liquor Control until retirement. Sylvia’s first love was caring for her family. As a gifted seamstress she also made most all of her clothes and Pam’s. Sylvia worked for the San Felipe Del Rio Consolidated Independent School District, first at Junior High and then retiring as a secretary in the Food Service Office. After she retired she became an avid quilter winning many ribbons. As a cook her enchiladas, fish fry suppers, and desserts are going to missed. John Raymond’s most challenging job was caring for his bride these last ten plus years. Despite his sight fading away and poor hearing, his devotion sustained him as Sylvia’s caregiver and made it possible for them to stay home as her dementia advanced. We are thankful for the care John Raymond and Sylvia received during the last seven months of life at the Val Verde Nursing and Rehab Center. Dr. Don McElory will preside for the Chapel funeral service at 10:00AM, Saturday, August 5, 2017 at the G.W. Cox Memorial Funeral Home in Del Rio, Texas. Interment service will be at Carta Valley Cemetery at 2:00PM.