Nov. 1, 1931-June 22, 2020
Robert Joseph Riley (Bob Riley) of Huntsville, Texas, passed away on June 22, 2020, at the age of 88, after a three-year battle with cancer. Bob died peacefully with his family by his side. Bob was born in Hudson, New Hampshire, on November 1, 1931, to father, Melville Riley, and mother, Helena Doliva.
The younger of two sons, Bob's desire to play football led him to leave his home in Gloucester, Massachusetts, to attend Utah State University with his brother, Dick. His strong sense of patriotism steered him to enlist in the Army at age 19. After fulfilling his duty, Bob left to attend Northern State in Aberdeen, South Dakota, where he played football for four years, and graduated with a degree in History. Bob received a master's degree in physical education and health from the University of Wyoming and was a graduate-assistant for both the football and track teams during his tenure.
In 1960, he accepted his first coaching position at Kemmerer, Wyoming, where he met Peggy Curfman. It was love at first sight for Bob. He and Peggy married on August 11, 1962, and spent 58 years together. Over the course of Bob's 55-year career, he mentored thousands of young men that the family still consider friends today. Bob retired from Sam Houston State University, where he coached and stayed involved in the football program for 39 years.
Bob is survived by his wife, Peggy; children, Ken, Bob, Stephanie, Patty and Kevin; and his 13 grandchildren; and 6 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his daughter, Jennifer; and brother, Dick.
A visitation is planned for Thursday, July 2, 2020, from 5 to 7:00 p.m. with remembrances from family and friends to follow at Sam Houston Memorial Funeral Home, 1700 Normal Park Drive, Huntsville, Texas. A recording of the remembrances will be available for viewing at hahnspot.com. Memorial condolences to the family may be made at www.shmfh.com
The funeral mass will be held on Friday, July 3, 2020, at 11:00 a.m. at St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church for family and close friends. The family requests that attendees for all events follow COVID guidelines.
People wishing to honor Bob's commitment to service and dedication in helping others reach their greatest potential, can make donations to The Bob Riley Memorial Fund through Sam Houston State University Advancement, PO Box 2537, Huntsville, TX, 77341 or by calling 936-294-4260. Or to St. Vincent de Paul Society through St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church, 1323 16th St., Huntsville, TX, 77340, or by calling 936-295-8159.
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