Morris E. Riley
Morris E. Riley, 92, passed away Wednesday, July 30, 2014, in Evansville. He was born July 22, 1922, in Posey County, Indiana. He is survived by his wife of 70 years, Deloris Riley.
He graduated from Reitz High School, in 1941, where he was the Kiwanis winner in football. He joined the U.S. Navy during World War II. He attended Evansville College and after graduation, he started his teaching and coaching career at Central High School and later became the first varsity football coach at North High School, coaching from 1956 to 1975. He was known by many as just "Coach!" He taught Physical Education and Driver's Education during his teaching career.
Morris ended his football coaching career at North with over 100 victories. He also coached several other sports at North including wrestling, boy's track, and girl's golf (calling themselves "Riley's Dollies"). He later coached men's golf at the University of Evansville. Many years were spent at Oak Meadow where both he and his wife, Dee, lived and played golf.
He was honored by being named to the University of Evansville Athletic Hall of Fame in 1977. Also, he was named to the Indiana Football Hall of Fame in 1987. He possessed a life-long passion for sports, especially football and golf (where he scored a hole-in-one and also "shot his age").
Morris was a member of the Evansville Quarterback Club and the Huddleback Club. He was also a member of the Masonic Lodge and the Shrine, where he enjoyed his time as a Funster!
He was preceded in death by his parents, Fred and Gertrude Riley; and several brothers and sisters.
Morris is survived by his wife, Deloris; his son, Scott (Susan) Riley; his daughter, Susan (Roger) Herrin; grandchildren, Tammy (Andy) Thomsen, of Placentia, CA, Cory (Staci) Herrin, Clay (Crystal) Herrin, both of Evansville, and Graham (Grace) McDowell, of Chicago, IL; eight great-grandchildren, Riley Jane and Reaghan Herrin, Carli and Kelsie Herrin, Riley Nicole and Makenna Thomsen, and Whitney and Jordan Malloy; and several nieces and nephews.
The family wishes to thank the staff at Solarbron (The Point) and the staff at West River Skilled Care and Assisted Living for the care and attention given over the last few years.
Funeral Services will be 7 p.m. Friday, August 1, 2014, at Alexander East Chapel, officiated by Morris' grandson, Rev. Dr. Cory Herrin, with burial at a later date in Sunset Memorial Park. Friends may visit Friday from 2 p.m. until service time at the funeral home.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial contributions be made to "EVSC Foundation/Morris Riley Memorial" to honor the memory of Morris Riley as North High School's first football coach. Funds will be used to support North High School and to construct a pedestal and bust of Morris Riley in front of the new football stadium. Memorial contributions may be sent to EVSC Foundation, 951 Walnut Street, Evansville, IN 47713. Condolences may be made online at www.AlexanderEastChapel.com.
Alexander Funeral Home-East Chapel
2115 Lincoln Avenue Evansville, IN 47714
Published in Courier Press from July 31 to Aug. 1, 2014