Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Obituary Archives

January 18, 2013

Thelma Landrum Riley

BRADENTON, Fla. — Thelma Landrum Riley, 87, of Bradenton, Fla., formerly of Tazewell, Va., passed away on Jan. 8, 2013 at her home after a courageous battle with pancreatic cancer.

Born on Oct. 6, 1925, in La Follette, Tenn., she was the daughter of the late John Landrum and Eunice Landrum Sharpe. Following a mining accident which took her father when she was 4 years old, she was raised by her mother and step-father, Hinton Sharpe. Thelma was raised in La Follette, Tenn. and after marrying the late Thomas Reece Riley, they moved to Squire and then to Tazewell, Va. where she raised their five children.  She was an accomplished seamstress, creating clothing for her children and grandchildren. She moved to Bradenton in 1987. Her grandchildren fondly remember decorating envelopes in the hopes she might win the Publisher's Clearing House. She will be most remembered for her Sunday dinners and Monday leftovers, her sense of humor and her love for her grandchildren.

In addition to her parents, step-father and husband, she is predeceased by her son, James Allen Riley Sr.; two daughters, Susan Riley Heath and Heather Riley Williams; one son-in-law, Ernest Varney; one step-son, Thomas Reece “Sonny” Riley and five siblings, Ester Landrum, Lucille Ward, Dennis Sharpe, Shirley Sharpe and Luke Landrum.

Survivors include one son, Larry Riley of Grottoes, Va.; one daughter, Pamela Varney of Bluefield, Va.; two sisters, Louise Watkins and husband Mickey of Bradenton and Lassie Hensley of La Follette, Tenn.; one brother, Carlos Landrum and wife Nadine of Athens, Tenn.; eight grandchildren, James Riley and wife Jennifer of Raleigh, N.C., Tracy Riley of Tazewell, Stephanie St. Lawrence and husband Kenny of Bradenton, Jamie Hayes and husband Shane of Tazewell, Mandy French and husband Richie of Tazewell, Marcus Saba of the home, Sean Riley of Christiansburg, Va. and Kayla Crissman and husband Christopher of Christiansburg; ten great-grandchildren, Nicholas and Erin Riley, Jared and Aulden St. Lawrence, Connor, Hannah and Olivia Hayes, Gabrielle and Charlize French and Pyper Riley; and special friend, Dr. Roswel Beck of Bradenton.

A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday Jan. 19, 2013, at the  Grandview Memory Gardens Mausoleum in Bluefield, Va. with Pastor Steve Branch officiating.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made in Thelma's memory to Team Burke's Garden Relay for Life of Tazewell County, c/o The American Cancer Society, PO Box 246, Abingdon, VA 24210.

 Information submitted by Peery & St. Clair Funeral Home of Tazewell, VA.

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