Julian L. Ridlen

Logansport, Indiana

1940 - 2017


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Julian L. Ridlen

The Honorable Julian L. Ridlen, 77, Logansport, passed away Tuesday, October 10, 2017.

Born in Decatur, Illinois, on February 4, 1940, Julian was the son of Charles Fred and Doris Franklin Ridlen. 

On June 1, 1963, Julian was married to Susanne (Sue) Smith, who survives.

Julian received a B.A. degree from Anderson University in history, and a J.D. degree from the George Washington University Law School in Washington, D.C.

An attorney since 1968, Julian was elected State Treasurer in 1978 and again in 1982.  During this period Julian was responsible for negotiating Indiana's loan to the Chrysler Corporation, for the creation of the Indiana Bond Bank, serving as its first chairman.  By appointment of Governor Robert D. Orr, Julian served as chairman of the Indiana Housing Finance Authority. 

Julian was elected to two terms as Judge of the Cass Circuit Court, and for the past ten years served as Senior Judge, until his retirement in December 2016.

Julian has written contributions for the Encyclopedia of Indianapolis and the 2010 publication, Justices of the Indiana Supreme Court.  In addition, he was working on a book with the working title of The Life and Times of Sunny Jim Watson.

Julian twice received the Sagamore of the Wabash, from Governors Bowen and Orr, the Grissom Outstanding Community Service Award, the Anderson University Distinguished Alumnus Award, the SPEA Award from Indiana University Kokomo, was twice the recipient of the Book of Golden Deeds, the Cass County Spirit of the Community Award, the Jaycee's Outstanding Citizen of the Year Award, and the Boss of the Year from the National Secretaries Association.  Julian and Sue were honored last fall with the Cass County Community Foundation's "Thanks for Giving" 2016 Volunteer Award. 

Both Sue and Julian have been active with the Benjamin Harrison Presidential Site in Indianapolis.  Julian served on the board and headed a task force involving the expansion of the site facilities.  He was to be recognized next week as the first recipient of the "Ridlen Award for Visionary Service."

Also surviving are sisters, Roberta Weber, Fallbrook, California, Betty (Don) Feaster, Indianapolis, and brothers, Charles (Greta) Ridlen, Decatur, Illinois, and Edward (Sue Ann) Ridlen, Ames, Iowa, as well as nieces and nephews.

Other close friends include brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Joe and Barbara Smith, Indianapolis, and Tom and Ginger Clark, Chestertown, Maryland, and kidney donor Karla Stouse and her husband Jeff.

The visitation will be Tuesday, October 17, 2017, 4 to 8 p.m., at Kroeger Funeral Home, Logansport. 

The funeral will be Wednesday, October 18, at Calvary Presbyterian Church, Logansport with visitation beginning at 10 a.m., funeral at 11 a.m.

Interment will be in Mount Hope Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made to Calvary Presbyterian Church, 701 Spencer Street, Logansport, IN 46947 or to the Cass County Community Foundation, P. O. Box 441, Logansport, IN 46947.

Family and friends may leave a memory or message of condolence by visiting the online obituary at www.kroegerfuneralhome.com.

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I am so fortunate to have met Mr. Ridlen and enjoyed his incredible depth of knowledge and his eagerness to share his interest in all things political with us at the Indiana State Museum! His generosity and enthusiasm were inspiring. My heart goes out to his family on the loss of such a vital person.

I will never forget working as his campaign photographer and flying down to Indianapolis on election night. It was a highlight of my young life. Julian was a true gentleman and he will be greatly missed.

May passing time, caring friends and loving memories, work gently through the coming days to help comfort his family.

I offer a wonderful source of comfort to the ones missing Mr. Ridlen, that God lovingly remembers when we work hard "only to exercise justice, to cherish loyalty, and to walk in modesty." Micah 6:8. It sounded like Mr. Ridlen had a great sense of justice and I know his hard work will continue to be appreciated. Most importantly God offers beautiful promises for the future for us all in the future. May this encourage you at this time.