Michael William Riley

March 19, 1952July 22, 2014
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Riley, Michael W. March 19, 1952 – July 22, 2014

Michael W. Riley 62, formerly of East Peoria, IL died unexpectedly on July 22, 2014.

Survivors include wife, Christine; children Jill and Mitchell Riley and daughter by marriage Michelle; mother, Shirley, sister Kathy Lanning and brother in law Christian Schaffer, grandsons, Andrew and Nicholas.

Michael spent his career in athletics holding a variety of jobs titles including Athletic Director, Golf and Basketball Coach and Admissions Director at the following community colleges: Illinois Central College, Spoon River College, Lincoln College, Illinois Valley Community College and Manatee Community College in Bradenton Florida. He touched the lives of many of the students he taught and coached.

Michael’s final position was with IMG Academies where he worked in the golf program assisting coaches and students. He loved being around sports and athletes at a place in which it was the top priority. A celebration of Michael’s life will be held on Tues, July 29th from 3-7pm at Palms- Robarts Funeral Home, 170 Honore Ave., Sarasota, FL 34232

Charitable donations can be made in Michaels honor to First Tee of Sarasota Manatee, 8586 Potter Park Drive, #115, Sarasota, FL 34238




  • Celebration of Life Tuesday, July 29, 2014


Michael William Riley

have a memory or condolence to add?

Paula Snodgrass

August 12, 2014

To Chris and family,
I have already wrote to you to express our saddness, but as the days go on we are still so sad about Mike's passing. God Bless, he was such a great person and friend.

Jimmy Elgas

July 30, 2014

Chris, Jill and Mitch our deepest sympathy to you. Coach Riley was such a genuine, positive, bright and caring individual. He had a tremendous influence on me as a young coach at Lincoln College. We are all put on this earth to help other people, and without question Coach went above and beyond that calling. While I know it will not make your grief subside, may you find comfort that Coach impacted many peoples lives including mine. My family and I will be praying for you guys.

Mark Bennett

July 29, 2014

What a great guy. Mike and I were in the Montel's in HS and he was a dear friend during those years. I'm sure you know what a great guy he always has been. I've been out of touch from him for decades, but have thought many times about the vacations his family and mine took in Wisconsin during our childhood visiting Lac Du Flambeau and seeing the Native American shows and such. Remember him on water ski's for the first time..he was good. God bless you all and know that he will always have a place in many hearts.

Curt Morr

July 29, 2014

Lord, I lift up Mike's family to you. I ask that you provide them strength and comfort in this time of deep need. Their hurt and grief run so deep. I can only imagine how hard this time must be for them. I pray that you help them maintain their faith in you during this difficult time.

I know you can be our greatest shoulder, but I also ask that you remain their biggest provider. It is a time when daily life can be so burdensome. Please provide patience from others as they work through their grief. Surround them with understanding so that they can work through all the emotions this loss has triggered. Allow those around them to help keep regular life on track where possible.

I pray these things in your holy name. Amen.

Don Bockler

July 29, 2014

We were very fortunate to have Mike join our staff at Parkview Jr. High in Creve Coeur. He proved to be an excellent coach and mentor to our students. I followed him as he continued to advance locally. ( I always knew he would 'go places'). A GOOD MAN! I am so sorry for your loss and send my sincere condolences to his family. Don Bockler

Dan Cunningham

July 29, 2014

Dear Chris, Jill and Mitch-
May the Good Lord look over you in this time of sadness. Mike was always the "COACH" in whatever he endeavored and his passion for everything he was involved in will be his legacy. He will be missed by all of us who had the privilege of knowing him. God Bless!

July 29, 2014

May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow.

Joe Duffy

July 29, 2014

To Chris, Jill, Mitch, & the rest of Mike's family my deepest sympathy and condolences

The news of Mike's passing was a shock to me. Fortunately I had a chance to catch up with Mike when he was in Peoria earlier this year for his induction into the Peoria Sports Hall of Fame. Mike was both a friend and mentor (a common theme through all these messages). We had some fun times playing softball together over the years both on and off the field. We could fill a book with all those stories. Thanks to Mike and Chris I met my wonderfull wife Janet. It was Mike who opened the door at 11 PM on a Sunday night to celebrate the birth of my first daughter with a couple of Miller Lites. Mike positively influenced everyone he met and I like many people am a better person for having known Mike. Rest in peace my friend.

Cheryl Schaffer

July 28, 2014

My dear Chris, Jill and Mitch,

How our world will miss your spouse and dad.

To me he was the gentle giant who knew and lived the importance of family, had an infectious smile and laugh, an incredibly kind heart and a truly good soul.

To me, Mike was a lot like the sweet and soft Ferdinand, the bull.

I will always be scanning the crowd at sporting events looking for my Mr. Monopoly Man who will be enjoying the competition and a good game.

Eternal peace to you, my friend, and thanks for sharing a bit of you with the rest of us.

Joe Hendrix

July 28, 2014

To Chris and family: I was shocked and deeply saddened to hear of Mike's passing last week. I had not been in touch with Mike in recent years but I have never forgotten him. I first met him when I had a chance to sub on his softball team in a weekend tournament in Bartonville. We won that tournament to qualify for a national tourney in Detroit later that summer and I was fortunate enough to keep playing with his team for years after that. We won a lot of games but more importantly to this day I know we had more fun than any other team we ever played! A few years later Mike offered me an opportunity to return to central Illinois working for him at Lincoln College and helped me to grow into that role which has led to a career in higher ed that continues to this day. Mike was always upbeat and positive, and he worked hard, but he also made sure there was a lighter side and that he and his staff (and teams) had fun as well! As Curt mentioned there are a lot of great memories from those days and we will definitely not forget them! My thoughts and prayers go out to all of you at this most difficult time. RIP Mike.