Former Juneau resident Alaskan Lenvil "Len" M. Riley died May 10, 2007, of heart failure while visiting the Great Wall of China. He was 53.
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He was born Oct. 6, 1953, in Ketchikan, the third of six children born to Violet and the late Alfred Riley.
His careers as a heavy equipment mechanic, fleet manager, flight instructor and most recently as a personal pilot for elite clients, kept him on the move or in the air flying to many places, including more than 26 countries in the last year.
He met his fiancee, Fran Dahl, of New York, in 2002. They were to be married on July 10 in Santorini, Greece. Her children, Lauren and Matthew Dahl, and his daughter were to be present, along with his co-pilot Orlando Moreno, who was with him when he died.
Family members said he is remembered as a passionate aviator and a consummate professional in all his endeavors. From jets to helicopters, he flew them all with great skill and humility, they said. But he is remembered best for his immaculate white and red Piper PA12 Super Cruiser in which he explored Southeast Alaska.
In 1980, he moved to Juneau where he met and married Sheila Good. Their daughter was born in 1984. Their family moved to Sitka and stayed until 1995 when they divorced. He moved to Redmond, Ore., in 1996, working for a variety of flight companies. He later joined the professional flight staff of Spirit Aviation in 2000, for which he flew until his death.
He was preceded in death by his father and siblings, Kelly Riley and Colleen MacCannell.
He is survived by his daughter, Dawn Lyn Riley-Good; his fiancee; his mother and siblings, Linda Wright, of Portland, Ore., Connie Riley, of Juneau, and Wayne Riley, of Meridian, Idaho; and extended family and many friends around the world.
Memorial services are planned for June 2 at the Prineville, Ore., airplane hangars where his daughter and fiancee will scatter his ashes from the sky from Len's Piper Super Cruiser. His former father-in-law, flight student and close friend Don Good, will pilot the plane for his final flight.
For information, contact Dawn-Lyn Riley-Good at 789-0705.
Flowers or remembrances can be sent to Phil Taylor, 3177 NE SugarPine, Prineville, OR 97754.
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