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Rita Riggs

1930 - 2017 Obituary Condolences Gallery
Rita Riggs Obituary
September 2, 1930 - June 5, 2017 Rita Riggs, 86, American Costume Designer, passed away 5 June, 2017 in Los Angeles. She was born in Lead Hill, Arkansas to J. Almus Riggs and Ida V. Keeling Riggs. After an interview in 1954, CBS hired Rita Riggs the next day. Her first assignment was in the costume department for Shower of Stars followed by Climax!, Playhouse 90, and Alfred Hitchcock Presents, which led to her further association with Hitchcock on Psycho, The Birds, and Marnie, the latter two working with Edith Head. Ms. Riggs followed with costumes for John Frankenheimer's Seconds, Richard Lester's Petulia, Peter Bogdanovich's Texasville, Jacques Demi's Model Shop, Peter Brook's The Happy Ending, Franklin Schaffner's Yes, Giorgio, William Friedkin's Deal of the Century. Her work on Divorce American Style and Cold Turkey began a long and celebrated collaboration with Norman Lear and Bud Yorkin for whom she created the era-defining designs for All in the Family, Maude, Sanford & Sons, Good Times, One Day at a Time, Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman and The Jeffersons at The Loft, her bustling studio in Hollywood. Among her last projects was the award-winning CBS film, Having Our Say: The Delany Sisters' First 100 Years for which she re-created a century of authentic southern style. In 2003, Ms. Riggs received the Career Achievement Award in Television from the Costume Designers Guild. In 2016, the Costume Designers Guild Legacy Committee awarded her their Career Achievement Award in Film and Television. Rita was a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. She was married to the late Charles Sharp. She is survived by the Caylor family, Colleen & Gary, Mark & Courtney, Todd & Lisa and their sons Drew & Doug. Everyone will remember Rita for her consummate style, relentless work ethic and passion for design. She taught us so much about integrity without pretense, only authenticity and candor. She lives on in her creations, the countless stories we remember and a lifetime of friends who cherish her. Be at peace, Rita. We will miss you everyday. A graveside service will take place on Saturday, June 10, 2017 at 11:00am at Olive Lawn Memorial Park in La Mirada, California. White Emerson Mortuary Assisting 562-698-0304 www.whiteemerson.com
Published in the Los Angeles Times on June 8, 2017
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