Captain William Riggs
May 07, 2041 – Apr 17, 2010
Captain William Lee Riggs, 68, took his last flight on April 17, 2010. He passed away peacefully at his home in Mineral, VA which was his last request. He was preceded in death by his mother Dorothy Bruce of Indiana; his father: Ollie Riggs of Kentucky; his brother: Don Riggs of Texas; his son: Billy Riggs of Indianapolis, IN; and his beloved pet Mike.
He leaves behind his soul mate and bride of 9 ½ months: Sandy Robichaud Riggsthough their courtship lasted 26 years. In addition he leaves behind his sisters: Rose Ricci of Las Vegas, Nevada; Carol Riggs of Indianapolis; his sister in law: Lou Riggs of Denton Texas; his cousin; Anita Telesco of Stamford Connecticut, and many nieces and nephews.
Aviation was Bill’s whole life. He was born in Indianapolis, Indiana on May 7th, 1941 and he learned to fly in 1959, when he was just 18 years old. His brother Don was already a pilot himself, encouraged Bill to leave his job driving a cement mixer and pursue aviation. Bill’s career took flight on June 1st, 1967, when he flew his first commercial flight for Lake Central Airlines Now U.S. Airways. His young career encountered some minor turbulence after just 6 months Bill was furloughed. He took a job with SMB Sedalia Marshall Stage Line delivering mail to Nebraska until Lake Central asked him to return in 1968. Bill flew clear skies with U.S. Airways for 30 years, during which time he got to fly numerous planes, including the Convair 580, which was the biggest, most powerful airplane in the world during its time, the DC-9-30, where Bill met his bride, Sandy, and the 767, which according to Bill, was his dream plane. Bill officially retired on June 1, 1997, exactly 30 years after he got his start in 1967.
After retirement, Bill perused corporate and general aviation at Louisa County Airport, close to his retirement home at Lake Anna. He also loved shooting, fishing, playing tennis, boating, and motorcycling, but none as much as he loved flying. Through the years he had several small airplanes that he loved to fly with his buddies at the Louisa Airport, the most fun was flying out with several other airplanes to favorite and unknown lunch spots for the proverbial $100 burgers. They would fly for food” and their destinations would be Maryland North Carolina Pennsylvania and West Virginia. While flying from Louisa Bill was very instrumental in building a grass landing strip alongside the main runway and he was also a CFII and continued to help local pilots with Flight Training Biennial Flight Reviews and Check Rides.
Bill was a “Real Aviator” and his big smile and heart will be missed by all!
A celebration of Bill’s Life will be held May 8th 2010 from 2:00 until 4:00 P.M. at Louisa County Airport Freeman Field.
In lieu of flowers donations may be made in Captain Bill Rigg’s name to Hospice of the piedmont 675 Peter Jefferson Parkway Suite 300 Charlottesville Virginia 22911.
Blue skies Bill.
Although Bill has flown West for the last time, with each meal flight we take going forward the memory of him will always be with us.
I did not know Bill, but your love for him shone through in your notes. I admire your strength and courage through this ordeal. blessings, Betsy
I only knew Bill for the last few years but really enjoyed his friendship and spent several hours flying off his wing on the way to eat lunch. I will miss his stories and the grand way he would tell them. Bill was special and will be missed.
Sandy, your Bill was a one of a kind man and you have always been a one of a kind soul mate” and wife. I know that you will get through this due to your strengh and know that Bill is still with you in your heart. I feel very honored to have known “Mr. Bill” for many years and will never forget what a genuine person he was and his wonderful smile.”
Sandy – our thoughts and prayers are with you. We know that you are at peace now that your dear Bill is at peace. Our deepest sympathy.
Sandy, i flew with your GUY” many times. It was great working with him. I`ll keep you in my prayers. Gay Hart Coppersmith F/A retired”
Remember all things are possible though Christ who strengthens us.
I sarry of Bill passing away I will Pray for you and Bill GOD BLESS YOU ALL. HENRY AND JULIA.
Dear Sandy,Having met Bill once I knew him only through you. Bill must have been a wonderful man to deserve a woman like you. Your love, dedication and devotion are an inspiration to all.God bless and keep you in His tender care.Irene Hart
Sandy, My deepest sympathy. I worked with Bill many times and will always remember his great smile. It would just light up his face! Janice
Bill was a true sparkplug on the Tanyard tennis courts. Whether as a partner or opponent, it was always fun to compete with him. Captain Bill was a gentleman and his presence at the club and at Lake Anna, as well, will be sorely missed! Our sincere condolences go out to Sandy.
Sandy, our deepest sympathy to you on Bill`s passing. Having known Bill since the Lake Central days, it was always a pleasure to run into him on the system. Many a Hanger Flying” sessions in operations. A great pilot and a wonderful person. He will always be remembered.”
Although Bill and I were close in seniority, I had one opportunity to fly with Bill. He was obviously a good pilot and we had a pleasant trip. I was saddened that he had to suffer so before finally succumbing to the dreadful disease that took his life. Deepest sympathy to Sandy who stood faithfully by his side during his difficult ordeal.Joe Kernan
DEAREST SANDYMAY GOD GIVE YOU PEACEJUST REMEMBER THE LOVE YOU SHARED WITH BILL AND THE MANY GREAT TIMES YOU HAD TOGETHERGOD WILL DO THE REST, LOVE, JUNE
Dearest Sandy…I hope that all the cherished memories that you hold dear of the good times you and Bill shared over the years, will in some small way help you through this difficult period.My deepeset condolences.Linda Burton
Sandy, I was so sorry to hear of Bills passing. I know this is not an easy time for you, and I wish I could say something to take your pain of emptiness away. I pray the Lord” be with you now in this your time of need and may “He” show you peace love and understanding. God Bless Lorraine Genola”
Dear Sandy, I am so sorry for the loss of your Bill… the obituary tells the story beautifully. May he be flying high with the angels above, First Class all the way—just like he was!
As a member of our airport gang” Bill will be surely missed but our memories will live on.”
Sandy, Though I only knew Bill one year, we both had a lot in common, in that we both had airline careers and both owned RV aircraft.I was just getting to know him like another aviation brother. He will be dearly missed.You have my deepest sympathy. Regards, Tim Bauer
Dear Sandy,The greatest blessing that You and Bill had was each other. Thank You for taking such good care of my classmate, and friend. Bill considered it a honor to help people and willingly shared what he knew so that others could be enriched as well. Bill`s presence here made the world a better place and I am honored to have known him.Respectfully,Jon Ludlam
Firends for nearly forty years..I miss him. As for Sandy, he told me many times that she was THE love of his life.
Dear Sandy,As you know, Bill and I spent a great deal of time together flying, shooting, hunting, fishing and just generally solving all the world`s problems. It has been a long year for of us all hoping that he could beat his illness. Bill has now left us, and I hope he is flying up there, looking down at us and smiling that big smile. Some months ago,while we were talking he told me that I had been like a brother to him. I was very touched by his statement and told him I felt the same. I always felt that Bill was a friend I could call any time,day or night,if I needed him and he would be there. I will miss my friend always.
Dear Sandy,Paul and I are deeply saddened for you and that our dear friend, Bill, is no longer with us. We will always miss him and will cherish the memories of the good times we shared. We take comfort in that he is no longer suffering and is at peace. He fought a good fight, with courage and dignity, just as he lived his life.
I will miss you always, Your Sister, Rose
Sandy, We are so sorry that you lost your Bill”. Our thoughts and prayers remain with you. You have many wonderful memories to treasure. Love Shirley and Ralph Carestia”
Sandy, our hearts and prayers are with you and we will miss our wonderful uncle every day………
Dear Sandy,It is hard to put into words how I describe my friendship with Bill. Over the years, we talked about many subjects and I could always talk to Bill if something was bothering me. He was a good listener and often had a valued opinion to offer. I could always count on Bill for help when I needed it, particularly when it came to flying somewhere to pick me up. I would do the same for him. His memory lives on in my heart. I miss him every day. I will be reminded of his absence every time I will go to lunch at Joe`s or other and each time I fly, he will be there beside me.
Sandy, Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this very difficult time.Bill might have taken his last flight but it was the HIGHEST ALTITUDE he ever flew,I am sure he was ALL SMILES!He will be missed,but the stories will continue. Pete and Diane Kopp
My thoughts are with the family, Bill was a fine man. I only met him once, when I purchased his C-180, 2493C. He was a treat to fly with, even for just an hour.Clear skies!!
Dear Sandy,Uncle Bill is the only person who called me Sugar Bear my whole life ! We will miss him so much, and understand that he is in a better place. Our thoughts, love and prayers are with you. Forever, Theresa and Family
Sandy, I am so sorry for your loss. I was very honored to have officiated at your wedding.The love felt by the two of you that day was remarkable. What a wonderful love to have been had by the two of you for so many years. You are in my thoughts and prayers. Laura
Dear Sandy, I`m one of Louisa crew that took a check ride” with Bill for my BFR. Fortunately my father was an airline captain and had taught me a few things old school. Bill asked me to do these same maneuvers that I had been raised on which made me feel connected to the whole generation of pilots that he and my dad belonged to. We do remember these guys when we fly. I hope you will come out and fly with us againTripp Jones”
Sandy,Your Bill was one of the few very special ones. God belssed you with Bill`s love and companionship, and Bill with yours for as long as he could. Just beleive that God has called him for his final flight to do a greater task. Know that he is making a place for you when your time comes.God Bless You in your time of pain and sorrow. You are in my prayers.Paula Martin
Dear Sandy, It didn`t matter whether it was a day hanging out at the airport or flying off somewhere to lunch, Bill just made it more fun. I miss him.
Dear Sandy,My Deepest Sympathy, Bill was a good friend,and flew many a trip with him, and he would always keep you laughing. I know he is in a better place, and will always be looking over you. Fly High My Friend.
Sandy, our thoughts and prayers are with you and Bill`s family on his passing. He fought a very hard battle and is at peace now. Your love shines thru everytime you say his name. He will be missedOur deepest condolencesLove Donna and Jerald
Sandy, what special memories you must cherish and have of Bill that you can hold dear at this time. The both of you had a very special love” for each other. I will always remember that smile that only Bill had and his laughter. I think of you often and know that you will find peace in knowing that Bill will always be with you.”
Sandy,There is nothing to say that makes it better, but I want you to know that you are at the top of my thoughts and prayers.Margaret Morrison
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