Robert Eugene “Gene” Riley

Robert Eugene “Gene” Riley
Robert Eugene “Gene” Riley(Robert Eugene “Gene” Riley)
Published: Nov. 22, 2022 at 5:00 PM EST
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Robert Eugene “Gene” Riley, 92, of Fairmont, passed away Monday, November 21, 2022 after a 4 ½ year battle with cancer surrounded by his family.

Gene was born on a farm in Parrish Run, Marion County, to the late Philmore Riley and Emma McGruder Riley Nottingham. He graduated from Monongah High School in 1949. After graduation, he married his childhood sweetheart, Lola Robinson, who preceded him in death in 1995. Together, they raised four children on New Hill in Worthington.

Gene started working as a young teenager on the railroad. After graduation from High School, he worked as a moulder at Fisher Foundry, then worked at Barrackville Bethleham Steel Coal Mines until it closed. He retired from the Fairmont General Hospital Maintenance Department.

Gene enjoyed the simple things in life, like sitting on his back porch swing watching the birds. He loved being surrounded by his children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. Mowing grass was his favorite chore. He mowed 5 acres one to two times weekly until this past summer when his illness made it impossible for him to ride his Gravely, where he always said he talked to God while mowing.

He was a member of the South Ridge Church and loved the entire pastoral staff and sitting in his “special seat.” Gene was adopted by Gabrielle Jordan’s White Hall Elementary Kindergarten classes and was blessed with many hand-made birthday and Holiday cards, gifts, letters, and all of the love they shared with him. He cherished and read their words frequently. He was honored with a “drive by” during recess and the students all gathered inside the fence to wave at him.

Gene is survived by his children, Cherie Cottrill of Fairmont, Kip (Tracey) Riley of Fairmont, Rhonda (Steve) Wilson of Fairmont, Vicki DeWitt of Fairmont; grandchildren, Scott (Patricia) Riley of Fairmont, Kaitlyn DeWitt of Morgantown, Karen Riley of Fairmont, and Kelsey Riley of Fairmont; great grandchildren, Dominica Riley of Fairmont and Isabella Riley of Fairmont; step grandchildren, Nick Young of Fairmont, Mathew Wilson of Germany, Anne Wilson of Weston; former son-in-law, Monty DeWitt of Fairmont; and many nieces and nephews.

In addition to Gene’s parents and wife, he was preceded in death by his stepfather, Albert Nottingham; brothers and sister, David Riley, James Nottingham, and Mary Ellen Nottingham; grandson, Christopher Riley; and a son-in-law, Fred Cottrill.

The family would like to thank WVU Medicine Hospice, especially his hospice team, Megan, Tina, Trish, and Barbara, for their compassion and support. He loved them all.

Dad was a kind and caring man and wonderful Father. The family kindly asks that in lieu of flowers, to just remember them in prayer and, as Dad frequently reminded his kids through the years, to always be kind.

The family will receive friends at Domico Funeral Home, 414 Gaston Avenue in Fairmont, on Friday, November 25, 2022 from 4:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. The funeral will be at the funeral home on Saturday, November 26, 2022 at 11:00 a.m. Interment will follow at Shinnston Memorial Cemetery. Online condolences may be sent to the family at