Jean Leo Riendeau, 93, of Woonsocket, died Sunday, July 5, 2020 at The Holiday Rehabilitation Center. He was the husband of the late Doris (St. Jean) Riendeau.
One of the Greatest Generation, Leo served his country honorably and nobly during World War II in the U. S. Navy as a S2c aboard the USS Olmsted in the South Pacific Theater.
Upon his return, he worked as a weaver in textile mills until he opened his painting contracting company, painting many “triple-deckers”.
He was a communicant of the former St. Ann’s Church and a parish trustee. When the church closed, he was among the volunteers that transformed it into the St. Ann’s Arts and Cultural Center.
Leo was a member of the former AMVETS Favreau-Bedford Post 12. He also served as an officer in several clubs in Woonsocket, including Club Par-X, Club Aram Pothier of Richelieu USA, and Council 2 of Union St Jean Baptiste, all in seeking to keep the French language and French-Canadian culture alive. A few of his children and grandchildren carry on the tradition of speaking French and enjoying the culture’s food and music.
Leo was an avid sportsman who hunted, fished, and owned horses. When he went riding, he wore his favorite cowboy hat and boots. When asked what he wanted for Christmas, his usual response was, ‘boots’. He coached his sons in the Woonsocket Youth Hockey League. During his retirement he was able to travel and went to his grand-daughter’s college graduation also fulfilling a lifelong dream to attend the Grand Ole Opry. He also traveled to New Orleans to visit the National World War II Museum where he was recognized for his military service. He made regular trips to visit his cousins in Quebec and once to Saskatchewan.
He is survived by his children, Diane Encarnation (Charles) of North Smithfield, Yolande Riendeau (Heidi Gervais) of Providence, Jean A. Riendeau (Ann) of South Kingstown , Gerard Riendeau (Elizabeth) of Columbus, OH, and son-in-law John Boucher of Manville. He also leaves seven grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his wife, Doris, daughter Denise Boucher, parents Jean Baptiste Riendeau and Marie Louise (Beaulieu) Riendeau, brother Normand Riendeau and sister Lillianne Houle.
His funeral with Mass of Christian Burial will be held Tuesday, July 14, at 11:00 AM in St. Joseph’s Church, Mendon Rd, Woonsocket. Burial with military honors will follow in Resurrection Cemetery, Cumberland.
Condolences may be sent to Mrs. Diane Encarnation at 170 Providence Pike #63, No. Smithfield, RI 02896 or via www.fournierandfournier.com In lieu of flowers, contributions in his memory can be made to Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society via www.nmcrs.org or to your favorite charity. Remote viewing of the funeral service will be available at 11:00 by using the following link: https://client.tribucast.com/tcid/98774530
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