North Bend’s Sam and Kathy Riley look back on six decades of marriage; family plans party in Oct.
August 23, 2012 · 1:36 PM
In 1952, Sam Riley first met Kathy at a local dance. Sam and Kathy Riley were joined in marriage on July 18, 1952. Lifelong residents of North Bend, the Rileys, together with their big family, have lived on the same street of Maloney Grove Road since they said, “I do.”
Their diamond wedding anniversary will be celebrated as a symbol of lifelong commitment, courage and love. Sam proudly celebrates his 80th birthday this year as well. The family is making plans for a big celebration of their 60th wedding anniversary and Sam’s birthday. All friends of the family are welcome to attend. The event is scheduled for noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, October 20, at Sallal Grange.
For Sam and Kathy, it is family that matters most, and what they cherish and hold dearest to their hearts. Their 10 children and their spouses are; Sam, who died a short time after birth; Mark and Crystal Riley; Darryl and Donna Riley; Scott and Cindy Riley; Shannon and Chuck Jayne; Traci Riley; Kevin and Lisa Rae Riley; Todd and Shelley Riley; Eric and Shari Riley; and Lisa and Casey Brogden-Riley. Most of the Riley children and their families reside in the greater Snoqualmie Valley. Traci lives in Seattle. Over the years, the Rileys have also welcomed the birth of 25 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.
Kathy proudly served as the Kindergarten room mother for all nine of her children, from 1958 through 1970. In the 1960s, work was hard to come by, and husbands would go where the work was to be found. Sam spent many months of the year in Alaska working construction and leaving Kathy behind to tend to the children.
Sam founded Riley-n-Sons Drywall in 1975 and until his retirement proudly operated the company, while working alongside his sons. Kathy opened the doors to North Bend’s one and only fabric shop; the Sew-Sew Shop in 1970.
The couple went on memorable vacations together, such as trips to Mexico, Hawaii and a couple of Caribbean Cruises. However, it is their summer trips to Lake Chelan, that Kathy and their children cherish most of all. Seventeen consecutive summers were spent together at Lake Chelan. Kathy would pack up the camper and head out of North Bend, always loaded with more than her nine kids, because doesn’t everyone allow their kids to bring a friend, even when you have nine of your own already? When possible, Sam would join them on the weekends.
For the Rileys, it is being surrounded by the love of family and friends that equates to ‘life well spent’.
Since 1967, when son Mark first went to Mount Si, there has been a child or grand-child in attendance at the High School. Today, as proud members of this Wildcat Nation, Sam and Kathy can often times be seen on the sidelines cheering on their grandchildren.