Millie T. Riggs, 97, passed away on Monday, August 20, 2018, at Hospice House in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. Private family services will be held at a later date.
Millie was born on October 2, 1920, on a hilly farm in Oxville, Illinois, to Harvey and Cora Thomas. She grew up during the Great Depression as a farm girl helping with the horses and mules and farm chores, and attended schools in Oxville and Winchester, Illinois.
She married James Metzler Riggs on October 5, 1939, in Winchester. Jim and Millie farmed in Mason County, Illinois, until 1955 when they moved to San Diego, California, and became urban dwellers. Their four children grew to adulthood in San Diego. In 1970 Jim and Millie divorced but they remained friends for life.
Millie remained in Southern California until she relocated to Sandpoint in 2010. Millie loved Sandpoint, and it quickly became home. She joined the United Methodist Church, shared meals with the Sandpoint Vegetarians, and enjoyed making new friends. She loved to walk, hike, dance, and practice tai chi. She loved physical and mental exercise and, until she ran out of steam in her last few years, didn’t allow idleness into her life. Millie was an avid reader, crossword puzzle whiz, and champion Scrabble player. She had a standing Friday Scrabble date with her dear friend, Lee Christensen, for many years. Millie was a cheerful happy person who loved a party and loved family gatherings.
Millie was a loving and kind mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother. She never failed to express her love to her family and friends. She was a faithful letter writer and family historian. In her later years she kept in touch with her far-?ung loved ones via Facebook and email and by frequent visits to Sandpoint by her many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Millie is survived by one son, Thomas Riggs (Georgia York) of Sandpoint; three daughters, Betsy (Bob) Wilbur of Boyds, Maryland, Mindy Riggs of Sandpoint, and Catherine Ford of Sandpoint; 13 grandchildren, and 19 great-grandchildren. She is preceded in death by her parents; a sister, Mae Shaw; and a brother, Leonard Thomas.
Millie was the matriarch of the family for decades who the family thought of as an absolute force of nature. She will be loved and missed forever.
Lakeview Funeral Home in Sandpoint is handling the arrangements. Please visit Millie’s online memorial at lakeviewfuneral.com and sign her guest book.