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Michael G. Ridley(1940-2013)

Michael G. Ridley, 72, passed away April 1, 2013, in Fairbanks. He was born April 19, 1940, in New York.
Michael was raised on Bainbridge Island, Wash., by his parents, John T. and Jocelyn L. Ridley. His father, John, was one of the people who helped design the Space Needle in Seattle. 
After graduation, Michael went into the U.S. Air Force where he was an airplane mechanic.
Mike moved to Alaska in 1968, where he married Ruth Ridley on Nov. 22, 1968, in Eagle. 
Mike and Ruth raised their two kids, April Frank and Brian Ridley, in Ester during the 1970s and early '80s, where Mike served a term as mayor in the early '70s. During this time, Mike worked as a cab driver, expeditor, dispatcher and carpenter out of the local Carpenter's Union.
They then moved to Ruth's hometown of Eagle, to be closer to family, where Ruth served as village chief and village corporation president while Mike did various jobs, including wild land firefighting on the Eagle fire crew.
The family then moved back to Fairbanks as their kids went to the University of Alaska Fairbanks, and it was at this time that Mike returned to his first Fairbanks job, cab driver, a job he did for 25-30 years, even owning his own "Car 54 where are you" for a few years.
During all of his years, he was known as a hard-working man, and always willing to help others. He was known for giving free rides to those in need, helping pay other's bills who were in need and helping in any way that he could, when he could.
Michael is survived by his wife, Ruth S. Ridley; daughter, April M. Frank; son, Brian D. Ridley; granddaughters, Victoria L. Frank and Valerie M. Frank; grandsons, Michael D. Frank, John B. Frank, Gabriel A. Ridley, Adam M. Ridley and Jacob E. Ridley; son-in-law, David M. Frank; daughter-in-law, Rebecca C. Ridley - all from Fairbanks. He also is survived by numerous sister-in-laws, nieces and nephews.
Michael was preceded in death by his mother, Jocelyn L. Ridley; father, John T. Ridley; mother-in-law, Louise Paul, and father-in-law, Susie Paul.
A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m Saturday, April 6, 2013, at St. Matthews Episcopal Church. A potluck will follow in the parish hall. The Rev. Scott Fisher will officiate.
Arrangements were entrusted to Chapel of Chimes Funeral Home.

Published in Daily News-Miner on Apr. 4, 2013
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