Dortha Bowles Riner, 96, of Montrose, Colorado, formerly of Cheyenne, Wyoming, passed away on Wednesday, November 8, 2017, at the Villa Manor Care Center in Lakewood, Colorado.
Dortha was born November 3, 1921, in Clinton, Oklahoma, a daughter of William Reuben Bowles and Viella (Rose) Bowles.
Dortha and her sister, Hattie, moved from Clinton to a ranch on Ridley Road north of Cheyenne with her family when she was a young girl. Moving into town later, she attended and graduated from Cheyenne High School and went on to graduate from the University of Wyoming with a degree in Elementary Education. After teaching school in a rural one-room school for a couple of years, she moved on and became a secretary for the Cheyenne law firm of Keith Thompson and Harry Henderson. From there, she went to the Wyoming Secretary of State office as corporation clerk and then to chief clerk for Thyra Thompson. While working in the Secretary of State’s office, she met William A. Riner, Jr., who was serving a term in the Wyoming legislature.
Dortha enjoyed politics all her life and attended the National Young Republicans Convention in 1951 when Eisenhower was elected president. After marrying William Riner in January of 1954, she turned her attention to being a full time mother, housewife and continuing her participation in civic activities.
Among Dortha’s interests were the Cheyenne Symphony and Choral Society for which she and William served on the board for almost 20 years and as president. They attended the First Congregational Church of Cheyenne. Dortha was also involved with the Cheyenne Women’s Investment Club. They traveled to California, New York, Boston, and Arizona. They were long time members of the Cheyenne Country Club and enjoyed many rounds of golf there. Dortha often enjoyed entertaining friends and guests at her home on 7th Avenue. She was an enthusiastic and competitive bridge player among her family and friends. For many years, she was active in her local PEO Chapter S. She remained an avid follower of Wyoming Republican politics and was the campaign manager for a candidate to the US Senate.
In the late 1970’s, Dortha took the real estate exam and began her next career as a very successful realtor in Cheyenne which she continued until she retired.
Dortha is survived by her three children, Garry Riner of Montrose, Colorado, Gloria Nolan of Denver, Colorado, and George Riner of Sebastopol, California; five grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.
A graveside service will be conducted on Friday, November 17, 2017, at 2:00 p.m. at the Lakeview Cemetery with The Reverend Kevin Frank officiating. Funeral arrangements are under the care of Schrader, Aragon and Jacoby Funeral Home.
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