Cover photo for Catherine D. Riordon's Obituary
Catherine D. Riordon Profile Photo
1925 Catherine 2013

Catherine D. Riordon

August 22, 1925 — December 17, 2013

RIORDON, E. Catherine, age 88, of Kettering, Ohio, passed away in Kettering, Ohio on December 17, 2013. Catherine was born Catherine Elizabeth Diebel on August 22, 1925 in northwestern Ohio, the daughter of Alonzo Diebel (a farmer) and Clara Miller Diebel (a music teacher). Her younger brother Richard passed away at the age of 5. Catherine graduated from Baldwin-Wallace College with a degree in music education. Her first job as a music teacher was at the Ohio Soldiers and Sailors Orphanage in Xenia, Ohio. In 1951, Catherine met and married Jack Riordon, a coach and physical education teacher from Cambridge, Ohio. Jack had two sons from a previous marriage, David, born in 1948 and Dennis, born in 1949. Shortly after her marriage to Jack, he was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis at the young age of 27. Jack became unable to work and needed much care, which Catherine provided until his death in 1968. During this time, she continued to be wife, step-mother, and teacher, working full-time to help support her small family. In 1954, Catherine took a position at Oakview Elementary School in Kettering, Ohio where she worked as a music teacher until she retired in 1983. During the span of her teaching career, Catherine taught music in the classroom and private piano lessons after school and on weekends. Among her achievements, Catherine was inducted into the Chet Roush Hall of Fame and recognized with citations from the City of Kettering, Montgomery County Commissioners, and the Ohio House of Representatives. After retiring in 1983 from the Kettering School District, Catherine launched a new career with Community Concerts out of New York City. Her job afforded her to travel and organize concerts throughout the northeastern United States. Catherine decided to retire one final time but could not fully enjoy retirement because of her love for the City of Kettering. Catherine was the Grand Marshall for the 2002 Kettering Holiday At Home Parade and for years worked as a faithful volunteer for the City. She was a member of the Kettering Volunteers Celebrations Committee, chaired the annual dinner for the Kettering (England) Sister Cities Program, and was the City Historian where she maintained a pictorial record of Kettering for the City Manager's Office. Catherine attended Grace United Methodist Church in Dayton, Ohio and was often seen seated in the front row with her dearest friends. Catherine was an avid collector of everything piano. Although the piano was her favorite instrument, she appreciated all musical instruments and all forms of music. She was a member of the Dayton Women's Choir, Delta Kappa Amma/PIC Chapter, Ohio Music Educators Assn., and AM Choral Directors. Catherine lived life to the very fullest. She was a teacher, a traveler, a collector, and especially enjoyed going to the opera and to concerts. She saw beauty in everything in the world. Catherine is survived by her step-son David Riordon and his wife Theresa of Kingman, AZ; step-son Dennis Riordon and his wife Sheri of Califon, NJ; their children Keely Valverde and husband Max of Califon, NJ, Travis Riordon and wife Rachel of McHenry, IL, Kelly Triplett and husband Jim of Paso Robles, CA, and Kevin Riordon of Rohnert Park, CA; and her close friend and caregiver, Judy Hopkins. There will be a Memorial Service for Catherine at 11:00am on Wednesday, January 15, 2014 at Grace United Methodist Church, 1001 Harvard Blvd. at Salem Ave., Dayton conducted by Rev. Sherry Gale. Interment will be at Renners Church, Baltic Ohio. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Kettering Education Foundation for the specific purpose of providing academic scholarships to deserving graduates of Fairmont High School or Grace United Methodist Church.

Funeral Home:
Kettering Routsong Funeral Home
2100 E. Stroop Rd.
Kettering, OH
US 45429

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Service Schedule

Past Services


Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Starts at 11:00am (Eastern time)

Grace United Methodist Church

1001 Harvard Ave, Dayton, OH 45406

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