James J. Riley, 77, portrait artist, long-time exhibitor at Lititz Outdoor Art Show

By on March 4, 2015

James J. Riley, 77, of Lancaster, died Monday, Feb. 23, 2015, at his home.

Born in Cleveland, Ohio, on April 6, 1937 to the late Thomas Alouisus Riley and Dorothy J. (O’Loughlin) Riley, he was the husband of Virginia “Ginger” (Tuthill) Riley, with whom he would have celebrated 54 years of marriage in October.

He graduated from Collinwood High School in Ohio where he was recently inducted into its Hall of Fame because of his numerous contributions to the Arts. After graduating from Collinwood in 1956, Jim entered the Cleveland Institute of Art, graduating in 1960. Upon graduation, Jim worked for the American Greeting Card Co., Cleveland and Mosaic Tile Co. in Zanesville, Ohio.

Armstrong World Industries brought Jim to Lancaster in 1967, hiring him to work in the rotogravure department. After 22 years at Armstrong, Jim was hired by Tarkett in Allentown. After nearly a decade of work as vice president of art design, Jim was hired by Pergo as a consultant.

An accomplished portrait artist, Jim was a member of the American Portrait Society, the Portrait Society of America, and the American and Philadelphia Watercolor Societies. Jim was very involved in the Lancaster community, serving as a member of the Lions Club and as a senator for the Lancaster Jaycees. He was a past president of the Lancaster County Art Association, a member of the Lancaster and Susquehanna Bonsai Societies, and was a long-time exhibitor at the Lititz Outdoor Art Show as well as various Lancaster galleries and shows.

In addition to his wife, he is survived by a son: Kevin J. Riley and his wife Julia of Pahrump, Nev.; and a daughter: Anne F. Cowher and her husband Gordon of Lititz; three grandchildren: Kelsey, Trey, and Connor Cowher; two brothers: Charles Riley of Mansfield, Ohio; and Paul Riley of Louisville, Ky.; and a number of aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, and nephews.

He was preceded in death by a sister: Rita Hopper.

A memorial service will be held at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, May 26, 2015, at Charles F. Snyder Jr. Funeral Home & Crematory, 3110 Lititz Pike, Lititz with Pastor Mark Thiboldeaux officiating. Friends and family will be received one hour prior to the service at the funeral home. Burial will be private at the convenience of the family.

Kindly omit flowers. Memorial contributions in Jim’s memory may be made to Alzheimer’s Association, Greater Pennsylvania Chapter, 3544 N. Progress Ave., Suite 205, Harrisburg, PA 17110.

To place a condolence online, visit SnyderFuneralHome.com. Charles F. Snyder Jr. Funeral Home & Crematory, Lititz, handled the arrangements.


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