Obituary of David Leroy Riffley
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David Leroy Riffley, 80, of Stockport, died on February 19 with loving family members at his side. Born in Gouverneur on January 23, 1943, David was the elder son of Robert Leroy and Shirley Tooker Riffley. Following his graduation in 1961 from Columbia High School in East Greenbush, David enlisted in the U.S. Coast Guard and was stationed in Cape May, N.J., where he served on the Miah Maull Shoal Light and aboard the USCGC Cape Kiwanda (WPB 95329).He was honorably discharged in 1966 with a rank of Engineman Petty Officer Third Class.
David had a long career with Niagara Mohawk Power Corporation and worked as a Class C "Hot Stick" lineman, retiring as a foreman in 1994 with 28 years of service. In his retirement years, David and his wife Debbie took pleasure in traveling around the country, including on a number of vacation cruises and trips to Alaska and Hawaii.
In 2019, he had the opportunity to go on a Patriot Flight for veterans to Washington, D.C., an experience he found to be especially moving and meaningful.
David held memberships in Kinderhook Elks Lodge 2530, the American Legion, and GlencadiaRod and Gun Club and was a social member of Stuyvesant Falls Memorial VFW Post 9593 and the Stuyvesant Falls Fire Department.
A talented mechanic, David enjoyed restoring vintage machinery and earned the nickname "Oil Can" among his friends. He tackled everything from antique steam engines and tractors to a 1923 Model T, but he was most proud of the 1946 Jeep in which he often participated at local parades and ceremonial events.
In addition to his many hobbies, David volunteered for a number of organizations, including as a driver for Disabled American Veterans and doing restoration work on the USS Slater Destroyer Escort moored in Albany.
David will be greatly missed by his friends and family. He is survived by his wife of 18 years, Debra Kirker Riffley; his daughter, Carolyn Riffley; stepdaughters, Julia Provenzano and Laura Slobodiak; grandchildren, Robert Bigness, Jr., Benjamin Barie, and Sarah Barie; and great-granddaughter, Anna Bigness. David is also survived by his sister, Shawna Lambert, and brother, Peter (Barbara) Riffley, as well as by his first wife, Joyce Baker Toussaint. He was predeceased by his parents and a stepson, Robert Jennings.
Funeral services will be held 11 AM, Saturday at the Raymond E. Bond Funeral Home, Valatie. Calling hours will be from 9 – 11 AM prior to the funeral. Interment will be at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, the family respectfully suggests that you remember David with a donation to the USS Slater at https://ussslater.org or addressed to P.O. Box 1926, Albany, N.Y. 12201.