Riel, Clifford J. 1906-2003

Obituary – Clifford J. Riel
Contributed to Genealogy Pit Stop
By Bonnie Baker Ryan
East Liverpool, Review

Clifford J. Riel, 96

SHAKER HEIGHTS, OHIO – Clifford J. Riel, dedicated educator and a member of the East Liverpool High School Class of 1925, died Friday, March 28, 2003, at the Fairmount Health Care Center of Breckenridge Village in Willoughby, Ohio, at the age of 96.

A longtime resident of Shaker Heights, he was born in East Liverpool, Sept. 24, 1906, the son of the late James Everett and Mary Bentz Riel. Following his graduation from East Liverpool High School, he furthered his education at the University of Pittsburgh, where he later received a master’s degree in education in 1940. He returned to his hometown to teach school for nine years, then began a long time instructional career at the University School in Hunting Valley, Ohio, in 1944. He was affiliated with the school for the next 28 years, serving as math teacher, class advisor, dorm master, founder of the Boosters Club and head of the cheerleaders. There, he held pep rallies and formed a cheering section to help the varsity tennis teams defeat their opponents. He coached freshman tennis and led his teams to victory through more than 100 games.

In 1968, he was awarded the school’s prestigious “Man of the Era Award,” given not more than once every 20 years to an individual who had contributed the most to the school’s athletic programs. When he retired in 1972, he was presented a bound volume of hundreds of letters from former students. The University School’s class of 1952 honored him at their 50th reunion this past year, where they established the Clifford J. Riel chair in Mathematics in his honor.

He was a devoted and loving husband to his wife of 57 years, the former Nell Rose Chapman, who survives at home. Mrs. Riel is the daughter of the late Rev. D. Park Chapman, longtime pastor of the First Church of Christ (Disciples) here. Mr. and Mrs. Riel were members of the Leadership Gift Society of the East Liverpool High School alumni association.

Funeral services will be conducted by the Brown-Forward Funeral Service at 4 p.m. Thursday at the Euclid Avenue Christian Church, 3663 Mayfield Road in Cleveland Heights. A graveside committal will be held at Riverview Cemetery in East Liverpool coinciding with the service in Cleveland, with the Rev. Wayne Standley officiating.

Those who wish to do so may make contributions in Mr. Riel’s name to the Riel Teaching Fellowships of University School, 2785 SOM Center Road, hunting Valley, OH 44022 The Dawson Funeral Home is in charge of local arrangements. View this obituary and send condolences on line at http://www.dawsonfuneralhome.com