This obituary originally appeared on Memorial Funeral Home, see it here.
RILEY – David G. of Portsmouth, RI, Commander, US Navy (Ret), died on December 21, 2019 in Portsmouth, RI. CDR Riley was born in Boston on May 28, 1942. He attended Nazareth Grammar School in South Boston and graduated from Boston Technical High School in 1959. He worked as a Technical Illustrator in Cambridge before enlisting in the Navy in 1962. As a Gunner’s Mate 2/c on board USS PIEDMONT (AD-17), he participated in two Western Pacific deployments between 1963 and 1965 where he was awarded the Navy Expeditionary Medal for Vietnam area service. Acquiring a degree in Elec. Engineering at N.C. State Univ, he was commissioned an Ensign in January 1969. He then served at sea on board various destroyers in Communications and Operations assignments. He was Chief Engineer of USS WABASH (AOR-5) homeported in Alameda, CA where he served in support of Task Force 73 in the Persian Gulf during the Iranian Hostage Crisis of 1979-80. His last at sea assignment was as Executive Officer of USS EDSON (DD-946) homeported in Newport, RI. Principal shore duty assignments include Ass’t Director US Navy Communications School in Newport, RI, Mine-warfare Officer NATO Military Headquarters/SHAPE in Casteau, Belgium, and as a Wide-Area Surveillance Staff Officer in the C3S Directorate of the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the Pentagon from which he retired on October 1, 1986. After his Navy service, he worked as a Project Manager for SIR, Inc. of Middletown, RI in support of various Navy R&D undersea warfare programs under development at the Naval Undersea Warfare Center, Newport Division.
After the death of his parents, he began what would become a decades long love of genealogical research, meticulously investigating and documenting the family history throughout the United States and Ireland.
Son of the late James F. and Alice (Murphy) Riley, he is survived by his wife of 49 years, Theresa (O’Brien) Riley (formerly of Kilkieran, County Galway, Ireland), children Michael (wife Katie), Sarah (husband Eric), Katherine (husband Adam), and Sean (wife Gosia); seven grandchildren Jacob, Calvin, Max, Bodhi, Dylan, Gwyneth, and Ruby; two brothers, John (wife Bonnie) of Bethel, CT and William (wife Kathleen) of Prairie Village, KS; and many nieces and nephews.
Visiting hours: Connors Funeral Home, 55 W. Main Rd. Portsmouth, Sunday December 29th, 2-4 pm. Funeral Mass, St. Barnabas Church, Portsmouth, Monday December 30th, 10 am. Relatives and friends respectfully invited to attend. Interment will be in Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, VA.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in David’s name to Lucys Hearth, Doctors Without Borders, or American Heart Association
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