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John Melchior Riffel

Obituary of John Melchior Riffel

RIFFEL - Fr. John Melchior Riffel, also as Dr. John M. Riffel, DDS, passed away peacefully April 20, 2005, at the age of 93, in Regina, Saskatchewan (surrounded by his devoted family). He is survived by his sister Rose (Bradley), and his sisters-in-law Christina Riffel, Nora Riffel, Helen Riffel, and Eva Deis. Predeceased by his father Anton, in 1956, his mother Katherina in 1971, his brothers: Fr. Peter OMI, Paul, Alexander, Michael and Jacob; his sisters: Angela, Teresa, Frances and Sr. Elizabeth OUS., his brothers-in-law, Peter Bonogofski and Don Bradley. His beloved wife Regina Deis died in 1975, and his youngest son Gerard in 1985. He is survived by his children: John Anthony (Anita), Thomas (Linda), James (Lena), Virginia, Philip, Susan (Klein), Margaret, Marylou (Keith Clauson), and Lorna. He has 25 grandchildren, and 13 great-grandchildren, as well as many nieces and nephews. John was born southwest of Prelate, Sask. on October 30, 1911, the fifth of eleven children. He graduated from the University of Alberta from Dentistry in May, 1940. On November 26, 1940 he married Regina Deis from Vibank. Together they raised a family of five sons and five daughters. He joined the Knights of Columbus, Council #1247, on May 24, 1941 where he held most of the elected and appointed positions. In 1981, six years following the death of his wife Regina, he returned to school. Dr. Riffel was ordained to the Priesthood on June 30 1984. Since his ordination at age 72, Fr. Riffel has served at the Health Care Facilities in Regina. Until April 30, 2003, he served as Chaplain of Santa Maria Senior Citizens Home celebrating daily Mass and administering the Sacraments to the residents, their families, volunteers and many others. Dad had a great love for people and great zest for life. Dads family was his greatest joy. As the father of ten children he was known to say, "Theyre all irreplaceable and many loves have I. Dad loved his job as a Dentist, lived and loved the Knights of Columbus, and loved his Ministry, particularly at Santa Maria Senior Citizens Home. His dental career spanned 42 years; he was a Columbian for 60 years: he was a Priest for almost 21 years which adds up to more than his 93 years. Flowers gratefully declined. Those wishing to make a charitable donation in Fr. Johns name are encouraged to do so, care of the Knights of Columbus Charitable Foundation, (2366 Avenue C. North, Saskatoon, Sask. S7L 5X5 - Capital Fund) or a Charity of your choice. Prayers will be held at Saint Marys Parish on Sunday, April 24, 2005, at 7:30 p.m. A celebration of Dads life will be held at Saint Marys Parish on Winnipeg Street and 13th Avenue, on Monday, April 25 at 10:30 a.m., Fr. Ken Miller presiding. Interment will be at Riverside Memorial Park following the service. Condolences to the family may be emailed to reception@speersfuneralchapel.com
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