February 11th, 1954 - August 13th, 2011 Gregory "Greg" Riddle, 57, a lifetime resident of Visalia, CA passed away on Saturday August 13th, 2011 at Community Regional Medical Center of complications arising from an aortic aneurism. When Greg went on to his next adventure, he was surrounded by many people who loved him. Greg was preceded in his passing by his mother Berneice Riddle and beloved brother Jeffrey Riddle and is survived by his father, Paul Riddle of Visalia, CA. Greg is also survived by his four children from his marriage to Jody Line of Visalia, CA: Caity Riddle-Meader and son-in-law Jeff Meader of San Diego, CA, Andrew Riddle and daughter-in-law Lauren Riddle of Costa Mesa, CA, Cameron Riddle of Los Osos, CA and Bailey Riddle of Santa Rosa, CA. The loves of his life were his children and he took great pride in their successes and shared this often with anyone who would listen! In addition to his children, Greg is survived by his sister Paula Smith of Paso Robles, CA and his twin brother Gordon Riddle of Las Vegas, NV -- to whom he was a best friend for his entire life. Greg was a graduate of Redwood High School in 1972 where he played football and soccer. He received a Bachelor's of Science degree from California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo in Ornamental Horticulture with an emphasis in Floral Design in the spring of 1977. He opened Wildflower Florist in Visalia in 1978 and had recently reopened Wildflower Floral Design Studio. Greg's beautiful arrangements brightened many lives and his incredible creations were a special part of many celebrations and tributes over the years. During the course of his professional career, Greg achieved a "Master Florist" designation from Floral Transworld Delivery (FTD) and always pushed himself to learn and grow in his trade. Greg adored gardening and was a master at nurturing flowers. He also enjoyed growing and giving away his world-famous tomatoes! He was a masterful cook and could always be expected to have freshly canned jam, pickles, and marinara sauce to share with loved ones. Greg was a volunteer and active in Visalia American Little League. He loved nothing more than being at the ballpark with his two sons. He loved umpiring games, even when he had to throw one of his boys off the field! He was Little League President over a period of years. He was active in the Visalia Host Lions Club for many years and served in several leadership positions including club President in 1986-1987. Greg was always quick with a smile and a story, loved children and dogs - but had very limited use for cats. He is survived by his faithful friend, Sally, an Australian Shepherd he rescued from the animal shelter. Greg was a friend to most everyone he met in his life and will be missed by all those that knew and loved him. A Celebration of Greg's Life, including a picnic and baseball game will be held at Mooney's Grove (Arbor 3) on Saturday August 27th, 2011 at noon and all are welcome to attend. As a way of honoring Greg, donations can be made to the Visalia Education Foundation (5000 W. Cypress Ave, Visalia, CA, 93277) with "Greg Riddle Scholarship Fund" in the memo. These funds will go to support a local student looking forward to a career in agriculture. Arrangements by Smith Family Chapel, Exeter. Online condolences: www.smithfamilychapel.com
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Published in Visalia Times-Delta on Aug. 18, 2011