Mark went to be in the presence of his Lord November 27, 2008. His death was due to complications of his ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease.) Mark was born Jan 15, 1955 to Louis and Delores Riddering in Evergreen Park, Illinois. As a young boy, he moved to Oxnard, California with his family. He graduated from Oxnard High School in 1973 where he excelled in swimming and water polo. Mark married his wife Sue in 1975. While working as a police officer, he completed his B.A. in criminal justice through the University of La Verne. Mark began his police career in Port Hueneme, California. He later worked for Ventura P. D. and Oxnard P. D. In 1989, he was hired by the Santa Maria Police Department, where he worked until his medical retirement.
Mark’s thorough enjoyment of his career led him to being a highly decorated police officer. While working in Santa Maria, he was instrumental in starting up the DARE program in schools. He worked in patrol and as a detective, but his passion was narcotics enforcement. His love for his work showed in his often having dreams of being on the job for years into his retirement. Even more than the work, though, Mark loved the people he worked with.
Mark and Sue had four children together. It was for his wife and children’s benefit that he moved the family to Nipomo, to enjoy the country life. As a father he was able to balance justice and mercy. He was also a great playmate, taking his kids to the beach and running around the backyard. Mark always put his family first and his children always knew how important they were to him. It gave him great joy to see who they became as adults.
Mark was raised in a Christian family, and he continued strong in his faith in Jesus until the end. He was a member of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Santa Maria. God upheld Mark and his family faithfully throughout Mark’s illness, which gave him the hope and the joy evident to all who knew him. Mark was passionate about showing people how good his God is. Mark’s confidence in going to Heaven to be with his God was based on his belief in Jesus to save him from his sins. Mark is now joyfully with the Savior he sought to faithfully serve.
Mark is survived by his faithful wife Sue of 33 years, his children and their spouses: Sara and Ben Brigham, Rebecca Riddering, Samantha and Kevin Brandon, and Luke and Christina Riddering. He had four grandchildren: Seth and Hana Brigham, Karis Brandon and Mark Riddering. He is also survived by his mother Dee, his older brother Wayne Riddering (DeDe), his younger sister Lynn Mackereth (Jim), his mother in law Connie Foss and his 3 brother in laws, Ken (Jan), Andrew (Diane) and Richard Foss (Jan), and numerous nieces and nephews. Mark treasured his friends and will be remembered by many.
The family is extremely grateful for the support of the entire Santa Maria community throughout Mark’s illness. Mark’s many family members, coworkers and friends helped tremendously with the special challenges presented by his illness.
The family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Mark Riddering fund at Rabobank (effective Monday). This fund will go to charities close to Mark’s heart.
Services to be held at First Christian Church in Santa Maria, Tuesday December 2, 2008 at 1:00 PM, graveside service and reception to follow.