Lloyd Carlton Ritzberg
October 7, 1958 – September 11, 2018
Lloyd Carlton Ritzberg was born in New York City to Mary (Mae) and Joseph Ritzberg on October 7, 1958. The young family, including big brother Joseph Darryl joyously greeted his arrival. Music was a lifelong passion of Lloyd’s. His exposure started in the crib. The year he was born, hit songs that fit him perfectly included Jerry Butler’s “For Your Precious Love”, Jackie Wilson’s ‘To Be Loved’ and given his striking good looks, most aptly, Little Richard’s ‘Baby Face’.
Music would be integral for the rest of Lloyd’s life. His father introduced him to the jazz greats. Both parents encouraged him with clarinet lessons and by supporting his singing in the St. Alban’s Children’s Choir. Along the way they realized that Lloyd had taught himself to play the piano and keyboards by ear. While singing in the St. Alban’s choir, Lloyd traveled to Canada, Chicago and to the New York State Capital where the choir was one of the first Black groups to appear there before a group of elected officials and dignitaries. Highlights of his time with the choir include performances on the Wonderama TV Show and Christmas performances at the New York Daily News Building.
Lloyd attended and graduated from Grace Lutheran Day School near Cambria Heights, NY, where his parents had their first home. We don’t know how he learned about engines, but many will remember Lloyd’s seemingly endless tinkering on his much-loved white, convertible Ford Mustang in front of the family house. He and younger brother Eric moved with their parents to Roosevelt, NY around 1976. By the time he graduated from August Martin High School in Jamaica, NY in 1977, Lloyd had become an ardent fan of Earth, Wind & Fire and would continue to love and play their music for the rest of his life.
After high school, Lloyd enlisted in the U.S. Navy where he became a Sonar Technician working on submarines. While in the Navy, he met and married Kathy Williams. Kathy and Lloyd started life together in Ledyard, CT. Soon, they had an addition to their family with the arrival of Aja Marie in 1980. Given Lloyd’s love of music, Aja was named after the Steely Dan album. Lloyd’s career in the Navy took the family from Connecticut to Norfolk, VA and San Diego, CA before returning to Long Island, NY where they welcomed a second daughter, Remy Noelle in 1990.
Lloyd served as a model for his younger brother Eric who followed his footsteps and joined the Navy in 1990. Unlike most, Eric found boot camp easy because his big brother had told him what to expect and how to handle it. Lloyd retired from the Navy as a Petty Officer, 2nd class in 1989. After retiring, Lloyd focused on his love of music and with Eric and another partner, opened a recording studio in Roosevelt, NY. Lloyd constructed much of the studio himself – setting up equipment, working on electronics and even installing plumbing! Music was definitely in Lloyd’s veins and he easily came up with hooks and riffs to support other artists.
Lloyd was multi-talented and always willing to lend a hand. Whether helping his aunt set up stereo equipment, installing cabinets for his mother or installing electronics with his brother, he approached each task with a can-do attitude.
Warm weather, family and career led Lloyd to relocate to Phoenix, AZ in where he and his partner Betty, welcomed Lloyd’s youngest daughter, Priya in 2005. In Phoenix, Lloyd embarked on yet another career with the City of Phoenix from which he retired in 2015.
Despite a series of health challenges, Lloyd kept a positive outlook and warmly welcomed his brother, sister-in-law, nephew and nieces when they moved to Phoenix in 2017. With the brothers once again living in the same city, they and their children became closer than ever and delighted Mae when all visited her in Las Vegas, NV for Thanksgiving 2017. That visit was filled with love, laughter and the family sharing their day with those less fortunate.
In the final days of his life, Lloyd expressed great courage, great compassion, enthusiasm about his future and a spirit of peace and forgiveness. He left a lasting imprint on our lives while he was here and in parting gave us all an excellent guidestar to emulate.
Lloyd was preceded in death by his brother Joseph Darryl and his father, Joseph. He is survived by his mother, Mary Ritzberg, his daughters, Aja Clarke (Alex) and Remy with their mother Kathy; and Priya; his friend and brother Eric, beloved Sister-in-Law Regina, nephew Breon, Nieces Zaria and Kritiana and a host of aunts, cousins and friends who love and will always remember him.
- Funeral Service Friday, September 28, 2018
- Committal Service Friday, September 28, 2018
Lloyd Carlton Ritzberg
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September 30, 2018
Wow, reached out to Lloyd early this year; had not seen him since I left the James K Polk May of 1985. Lloyd was a great person, always there to support. He had helped me with my initial submarine qualifications, kept me on track. I really wished we could have seen each other prior to his passing. Fair winds and following seas shipmate, rest ye’ oars.
Lisa Miller Autry
September 28, 2018
Family forever, Lloyd. Growing up together helped shaped who I am today, and I’m so grateful for that. Trusting you in the Lord’s care. Love you.... Lisa
Lori Miller White
September 28, 2018
Rest in Heaven cousin Lloyd. I will fondly remember the good times we had as children. -. Christmas, Thanksgiving, and the many barbecues and cookouts. ❤️
September 28, 2018
Rest in peace Cuz -- until we see each other in eternity for all eternity! I still remember good times in Nanny's backyard singing on the swings and watching movies in your attic like it was yesterday. Love, Leslye
September 21, 2018
Gone but not forgotten dear cousin. May your transition to Heaven bring you peace and, the arms of Christ give you joy! Until we meet again. Dayna Thomas Lance