Lt. Col. Donald V. Ridenour, retired, passed away on November 17, 2020, at Mary Immaculate Hospital in Newport News, Virginia, at the age of 91. Don was born on April 17, 1929, in Liberal, Kansas, to Adam Otto and Irene Wear Ridenour. He was commissioned in the Air Force in 1952 and attained the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. During his time in service, Lt. Col. Ridenour initially served as a navigator with the 13th Bomb Squadron, one of the oldest units in the United States Air Force. A veteran of the Korean Conflict, he flew over 50 missions while with this unit. In 1955, he was in a serious car accident in California, and though he lost flight status due to his injuries, during his hospital stay he met his wife, Olive, an Air Force physical therapist, who he married in 1956. He then served in various leadership positions with the Strategic Air Command in Nebraska, Turkey, and finally at Langley AFB in Hampton, Virginia, where he retired in 1971.
After his retirement, Don worked part time in several occupations but found his life’s calling in 1974 when his children joined the Langley Junior Rifle Club. Don served as a volunteer and coach for his sons’ team and continued to serve as a volunteer, coach, shooting judge, mentor and friend to families involved in this sport giving countless hours from 1974 until his death. He strongly believed that there was no greater calling than investing quality time in the lives of young people. He chose to do this through the sport of shooting and delighted in watching many teens in the Hampton and Yorktown area achieve high school, collegiate and Olympic success in shooting sports.
Surviving Don is his son, Mark and his wife, Barb, and their children James, David and Grace and his daughter-in-law Marge. Also surviving is his brother, Bob Ridenour, and many beloved nieces and nephews and their families. He is predeceased by his wife, Olive; his son, David; brothers, Jim, Walter, Richard, Paul, and Dean; and sisters, Rosalie and Gladys.
Lt. Col. Ridenour was buried Friday, November 20th, with full Military Honors at Parklawn-Wood Memorial Cemetery in Hampton, Virginia, in a private ceremony.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to either the Virginia Youth Sports Association (VYSA) 501c3 (10 Stirrup Ct; Hampton, VA 23664) or Fisher House Foundation (Fisherhouse.org), an organization supporting military veterans and their families.
Altmeyer Funeral Home Denbigh Chapel is assisting with arrangements.
Help tell the story of Donald by contributing to the Life Event Timeline. Upload the photo of an event...Post an Event