The Reverend Richard Ryley

The Reverend Richard Ryley


Let us remember with thanksgiving the life and ministry of Rev. Richard “Dick” Ryley, 88, of Clearwater, FL, who died on Friday, January 7, 202 at Vassar Brothers Medical Center in Poughkeepsie, NY. He was born July 31, 1934 in New York City.

Dick was ordained an elder in the United Methodist Church in 1966. He served Norwalk: Rowayton UMC in Norwalk, CT; Plainview UMC on Long Island; Christ UMC in Beacon, NY;  Verbank UMC in NY; and St. Paul’s UMC in Middletown, NY. He also served as chaplain at Craig House Hospital in Beacon, NY for four years. Dick retired in 1999 and in retirement served Warwick UMC in NY. His family says that during his 54 years as a Methodist pastor he selflessly served many churches and touched countless lives. At the time of his passing, he was a vibrant member of the Skycrest UMC in Clearwater, Florida.

Dick was very passionate about his four favorite things: family, the Lord, birds and baseball! He loved going on trips with Joan and exploring new places. He had an extensive lifelong bird list, having traveled to almost every state in the US as well as five different continents in search of new sightings. An avid sports fan who especially loved baseball, he loved spending days and nights at ballparks in search of autographs or just the serenity and atmosphere of the game. He most recently resided in Clearwater, FL – the spring training home of his favorite team, the Phillies.

He was predeceased by his parents, Norris and Vira Woodman Ryley, his brother, Thomas Ryley and his devoted loving wife of 49 years, Joan Straley Ryley. He is survived by his three sons and their wives: John and Patricia, Ken and Annie, and Dave and Holly, as well as by his five grandchildren: Kailan, Joshua, Allison, Aaron and Noah, and one great grandchild, Layla.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the in-person funeral service on January 10, 2022 was limited to family only. Burial in Verbank Cemetery, Verbank, NY will be in the spring.

In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory may be given to Hudson Valley Hospice, 374 Violet Avenue, Poughkeepsie, NY 12601; the American Cancer Society, P.O. Box 22478, Oklahoma City, OK 73123 or any charity of your choice.