Aaron Ashel Riley, known to many as “Poppa,” of Gloucester, Va., went to his eternal rest April 9, 2013 surrounded by his family.
He served his country with two tours of duty in the U.S. Navy during WWII and the Korean Conflict, and was a member of Providence Baptist Church.
Poppa was a charter member of the Gloucester Athletic Booster Club and was instrumental in the planning and fundraising campaign for the first permanent tracks at Gloucester High School, which was the site of the former Page Middle School.
Aaron retired from the Naval Weapons Station as a carpenter in the maintenance department, and was self-employed as a local building contractor for many years in Gloucester and Mathews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Luther T. and Ruby Hogge Riley; brothers, Bernard and Cecil, and sisters, Annie Earhart, Clarice Thacker, all of Gloucester, and Lee Hubbard of North Carolina.
He is survived by his loving wife of 65 years, Mary Jane Tillage Riley; daughter, Martha Barker and her husband Harry and their children, Autumn Barker and F. Clayton Barker and wife Adrienne; son, Wayne and his wife Suzanne, their children, Chris and his wife Stacey, and Andy and his wife Beth, and one great-grandson, Nate; sisters, Mary Oliver Wroten and Dorothy Smith of Gloucester, and one brother, Luther C. Riley of Louisiana.
Poppa leaves behind his two faithful companions, Frosty and Blackie, as well the many other faithful four-legged friends who found their way to his doorstep.
Funeral services will be held on Friday, April 12, 2013, at 2 p.m. in the funeral home by the Rev. W. Donald Ambrose. Burial will be in Providence Baptist Church Cemetery. The family will receive friends at the funeral home on Thursday, April 11, 2013, from 6:30-8 p.m.
Andrews Funeral Home, Gloucester, is in charge of arrangements.