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Charl Whiting Riggs Sr.

02/20/1943 - 06/02/2020
Visitation Date: 06/11/2020
Visitation Time: 6-8 PM
Visitation Location: Bunker's Garden Chapel, 33 N. Centennial Way, Mesa, AZ 85201

Charl Whiting Riggs Sr., 77, was peacefully called home on Tuesday, June 2, 2020.  He was surrounded by family in his home in Mesa, Arizona.  Charl was born on Feb. 20, 1943 in Phoenix, Arizona to Rockford and Julia Riggs.

Just celebrating their 55th wedding anniversary, Charl is survived by his wife Valorie Candland Riggs and their 9 children Charl (Sheli), Kimberly (Barry) Thomas, Marie (Clark) Fullmer, Duane (Colleen), Clayton (Kim), Don (Shanda), Ammon (Kim), Sterling (Linnea), and Natalie (Brandon) Connolly.  His legacy will continue with his 43 grandchildren, and 4 great-grandchildren.

Charl was preceded in death by his parents, Rockford and Julia, brothers Ray, Wes, and Wayne. He is survived by his two remaining brothers Larry and Ken.

He earned an MBA from Brigham Young University and spent the majority of his professional life as a real estate broker of land/ranches and owner-operator of Jurassic Stone.

He was the first Booster Club President for Mt. View High School, Board member of American Indian Services, recognized by Spencer W. Kimball for devotion and support to the Lamanite Cause, and received the highest leadership award in the Boy Scouts of America (Silver Beaver Award).

He was a loving husband that was devoted to his family, and you would often find him attending one of his children/grandchildren’s events.  Next to his wife and family, horses and cattle were his second love.  He was a true cowboy.

He was a devout member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. As a young man he served honorably in the West Mexico Mission.  Throughout his life, he served in numerous capacities for the church including Scoutmaster, Young Men’s Advisor, Stake Missionary, Ward Mission leader, Young Men’s President, Bishopric member, High Councilman, and Bishop.  He later served a mission with his eternal companion, Valorie in the Mexico, Monterey mission. . He strived to follow the Savior Jesus Christ.  In doing so, he demonstrated genuine love, kindness, and respect for all people. He was a man of faith, hope, and enthusiasm!

In the words of one of his favorite country songs, there will be an “empty saddle in the old corral.”

A Visitation will be held from 6:00pm to 8:00pm on Thurs., June 11, 2020 at Bunker’s Garden Chapel, 33 N. Centennial Way, Mesa, AZ 85201 (All are Welcome to the Visitation). Due to current conditions, a private funeral service will be held at 11:00am on Fri., June 12, 2020 (All are invited to view the funeral service virtually which will be streamed live at:

Facebook link: https://facebook.com/events/s/charl-riggs-sr-memorial/1647525195424037/?ti=icl

Zoom link:

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Description: Charl Riggs Memorial Service

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For more information, please visit www.bunkerfuneral.com


  • In the Fifteen Ward Young Men softball was deadly serious. Coach Charl Riggs was even more serious and I hated playing against his team each year at the championship. We finally teamed up when his daughter Natalie and my Daughter Taylor were on the same City softball team. Charl volunteered me to help him coach. He was just as serious about girls softball as YM but I discovered just how loving and caring Charl was about our girls. They still had to be winners though and that they were!


    My deepest and sincerest condolences to the Riggs family. Charl was our home teacher 21 years ago. My father loved speaking with him. Many times he challenged Brother Riggs and he always came back on the next visit with an answer for my father. My father loved his visits with Brother Riggs. He really helped my parents out after my father had oral cancer surgery. He always had a place in our hearts. My own father passed away 3 months ago. My mother has Alzheimer’s/Dementia but still remembers El Hermano Riggs. I will always remember him as a caring, loving and kind hearted person.

  • Daryl & MaryHelen Hatch

    Bro. Riggs will be remembered for his smile and gentlemanly way— a true southwestern cowboy.

  • Charl was always willing to help in any situation. When my son Ammon completed his Eagle project on the Navajo reservation Charl was there championing him. Charl was always on the lookout for young men or young women that needed love and encouragement. We will miss this good man.

  • Milo R. LeBaron III

    Over the years I’ve listened to my father speak of your father as one of Mesa’s Best. He respected your father in all aspects of his life and would quite often use him as an example to me as he would teach Christ Like Principles. The world will truly be a lesser place without him in it.

  • Richard Gooch

    Our family was so saddened to hear of Charl’s passing. He was a great friend and always fun to be around. We attended many sporting events watching our sons play. My boys were close friends to most of the Riggs sons. Charl did so much for others and did not look for recognition. He was an awesome Dad and Husband. Everyone loved him for a host of reasons. His sons and daughters are made out of the same mold. True gentlemen and ladies, all learned from loving parents. Charl had to be greeted with a big hug on the other side by his long time “cowboy” friend Max Germaine. We will all miss him greatly. Rest in peace Charl. God bless the Riggs family always.

  • Crystal Bowman

    The Riggs are one of those families that influence others for good. Charl and Val have made an impact in our community by the service and kindness and smiles they share. Charl will be missed. Sending love, prayers and condolences to your family at this time.

  • Marilyn Larson

    Our family was so saddened to hear of Charl’s passing. What a wonderful friend and person he was! We enjoyed MANY good times with him and Valerie and their children. Each of our sons had a special friend with their sons. Kent and Clayton shared Eagle Courts of Honor and great times in their various sports, Ryan and Donnie likewise were great buddies and Tyler and Sterling shared many fun activities together. We adopted Sterling as our go along friend with Tyler on riding the mules down the Grand Canyon and dozens of other adventures. Sports, scouts, and just hanging out activities were usually accompanied by Charl, the ever involved father. Our children all learned good lessons with his “old #12 boot!” They have laughed about it many times. Charl’s influence will live on for generations with our family. Our love and prayers are with our dear friend Val and her family. We will miss him but treasure his memory.

  • Jeremy Veasey

    My heart is very heavy today. Mr Riggs was an amazing man. He treated me like an adopted son and welcomed me into his family from day one. He always had a smile and I always would think “what would Mr Riggs do?” whenever I faced a tough decision in life, because he was the rock for not only his immediate family, but all those who knew him. My deepest condolences to the entire Riggs family. Val (mom), all the kids, and grandkids are incredible reminders of what an amazing man Mr Riggs was because they all have all of his amazing qualities in them. He will be deeply missed. Love you Mr Riggs!

  • Charl will always be remembered as a staple in the Mesa Community. Although I have not lived in Mesa now for a long time I will always remember the competitive softball games we had against his teams. I grew up in the Mesa East Stake and it seems like every year we would play against his boys teams in the semi-finals or finals coming out of the Central Stake. He was always so competitive but after the games win or lose he always demonstrated great sportsmanship as he coached his boys and was a friend to many others around the community. Charl leaves a great legacy and the Riggs family will always be remembered as stalwart people. Our prayers are with Val and all of their posterity in this difficult time. Charl was born one month after my dad who passed away 3.5 years ago and I miss him daily. I am sure they are in heaven now maybe playing some softball or paving the way for the rest of us to join them in the not to distant future. We will miss him and miss seeing him visit Utah to see his family.

  • Kelly and Alicia Burke

    Our most sincere sympathy and deepest condolences to the Riggs family. May the Lord give you the comfort and peace you need at this time.

  • Wayne L Gardner

    A giant oak has fallen! Charl Riggs Sr. was and is one of the greatest in Mesa history. He was exemplary in his way of life in so many ways. He has graduated on to a much better world. He leaves a wonderful legacy to his wife, children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. We send our love and condolences. Wayne and Teresa Gardner

  • Charl was an important advisor and mentor in my young life. I’ll never forget receiving a Christmas Card from Charl in 1998 while serving as a missionary in Guasave, Sinaloa, Mexico. He had served in the same small town many years earlier. He told me to say hello to Pedro Sanchez for him. I had never met Pedro Sanchez, but was able to track him down on Christmas Day to deliver greetings from his old friend. That Christmas Card led to his return to church activity. This experience is a good example of the extraordinary reach of Charl’s love and personal ministry.

  • Barbara Pullen

    Larry and Barbara send their deepest love and condolence. I remember the 1st time I met Val and charl Which must have been 40 years ago and we have been friends ever since. I was dating Larry at the time and he brought me to a dinner at your house. You were the kindest most gentle people I ever met. Later, Charl coached the women’s softball team that me, Val and Eve played on. What fun times we had. I always admired how he would take loads of food and clothing up to the Indian reservation and I had the opportunity of going with them. I was over whelmed when he called me as the Relief Society President and encouraged me. We love you Charl, Val and your family so much.

  • I would just like to send my deepest condolences to an amazing family. I adored your father and he was always such a great man. He leaves behind a wonderful legacy and an abundance of love.

  • My condolences to the Riggs family. To Don, Sterling, Clayton, and the rest of the family: your dad was a good man, as you well know. And he raised good kids. Thinking of you guys from Boston and sending lots of love your way.

  • Barbara Pullen

    Larry and Barbara offer their deepest love and condolence to all of you! I first met Charl and Val about 30yrs
    ago when Larry and I were dating. They invited us to come for dinner with some other couples. Charl & Val were the most kind people I ever met! Later on, Charl was the coach of our women’s softball team that me, Val & Eve played on. Lots of fun memories. Charl was always helping someone. Like the time some of us went with him to take food, clothes and Christmas to the Indian reservation. We honored and admired him as our Bishop. I couldn’t believe when he called me to be the Relief Society President. I saw him in action give loving care and assistance to those in need. He truly loved our ward and we loved him. Thank you, Charl, for the person you are and being such a good example to us. Now, get busy and finish some of your work up there.. 🤗💖

  • Brian McInnes

    We wanted to send our deepest condolences to the Riggs family for the loss of Brother Riggs. He was a great man! We could not have asked for better neighbors than the Riggs Family. They truly have blessed our lives in so many different ways. Brother Riggs always had the best method of calling his kids home in the evening when all the kids from the neighborhood were outside running about engaged in some type of game/activity (kick the can, hide n seek, various sports…). Some parents would simply call out for their kids or others might use a bell to call their kids home, but Brother Riggs would walk out in front of his house near the street edge and he would crack his bull whip a few times. All the Riggs kids knew it was time to head home. I also remember him cutting up cold, sweet watermelon on a hot Mesa summer evening for all the neighborhood, it was one simple way of many that Brother Riggs made growing up on Fountain Street a joy and a blessing. Thank you Brother Riggs. You are loved and will be missed.

  • Burnell and Judy Rundall

    We would like to send our sincerest condolences to the entire Riggs family. We know your hearts are heavy at this time, but your family is strong and will be a source of great comfort to each other.
    Both Judy and I have had some wonderful years of association with you. Judy has told me of her years in Phoenix 9th ward where Charl and many of his siblings grew up. Charl often referenced some of those years as our paths would cross. He was always ready with a big smile.
    I am grateful for the opportunity to have served as a home teacher to your family for several years with Joe Germaine, Sr. We had many wonderful visits and what a pleasure it was to watch your young family grow in spirituality and ability.
    Our prayers of comfort will often be with you.
    Burnie and Judy Rundall

  • Way back in grade school Charl was already known as a kind, genuine human being. It has been a blessing knowing him all these years and I pray peace and comfort for you, Valorie, and for your children and extended family. He leaves a worthy legacy and many friends.

  • Russ and Barbara Benson

    We are sending our heartfelt condolences to the Riggs family. We have so many wonderful memories of time spent with Charl and Val and their children over the many years we have been in Mesa. Having served a mission with the Apache Indians in Eastern Arizona and knowing Charl’s great love and service on the reservation, it was always fun to share stories about our separate experiences with the people we grew to love as we served. We could laugh about the same stories over and over again as we shared our fond memories.

    Being in the bishopric with Bishop Tom Clark and Charl Riggs was a wonderful opportunity to serve with two extraordinary men as well as to become lifelong friends with their families. We treasure those memories.

    Our thoughts and prayers will continue to be with you at this sacred time.

    Russ and Barbara Benson

  • A pillar of his community, Charl had a way of affecting the lives of everyone who knew him. We all have a positive memory of Charl. Mine was as a member of the basketball team Charl coached with his son, Sterling. With Charl’s encouragement and drilling I vividly remember as a boy feeling like a member the disciplined Hoosiers team from the movie. He instilled confidence in young men because he knew they would grow to need it. With the world, I will miss the goodness and influence of this extraordinary man. May his family feel “the peace of God that passeth all understanding” at this time. Philippians 4:7

  • I have good memories of Charl playing church basketball when we were in high school. He was always kind and generous to friends and strangers alike. Those kids from St.Johns were all good people.

  • Brent and Ilene West

    We are deeply saddened at the passing of Charl Riggs. Arizona has lost a true cowboy, but more importantly a wonderful Christian gentleman. He was an example of brotherly kindness, a gentle manner, a loving person for all walks of life, especially his Laminate Family. His example has blessed the lives of his nine children and their families. As we say goodbye here, there are others welcoming him with open arms in the life hereafter. We extend our love and condolences to the Riggs Family, especially Clayton Riggs, our special son-in-law and his precious family.

    Brent and Ilene West

  • Helen Gulley Angle

    I remember him..Wow he did good things in his life..So happy to see that he did much for the world..Helen

  • Melanie Sturdevant

    Thinking of you with love today, Val …… I wish I could hold you in my arms. I know how much you will miss him 😢

  • Susan Chambers Frerichs

    I’m so very sorry for your loss. What a Legacy he left to you. The last time I saw Val and Charl was a High School reunion. Class of ’61. Charl and Val (who I’d not met) were table hopping. Val was showing a picture of their nine beautiful children and their families on a vacation. Having not kept in touch I asked “today’s” question expecting a lovely story about a blended family. “How did this happen?” I asked. Val answered very succinctly, “I met Charl.” Indeed a beautiful story.
    Charl was a handsome athletic grade schooler. Once upon an afternoon at Clarendon in Phoenix, there were several of us girls watching the boys practicing basketball. The vote was that Charl had the best legs.
    I find from the other testimonials that he had the Best Heart and Soul also.
    My blessings to all of the family.

  • Jerry and Lynn (Parker) Harris

    Dear Valorie and Family …
    Words cannot express our sincere and profound sadness at the passing of your beloved, Charl … Husband, Father, Grandfather, Great-Grandfather and the many important additional roles he assumed in his inspiring life.
    I, (Lynn) knew Charl first at Encanto, then Clarendon and West High. He was always an all around nice person.
    We were honored to “attend” the heartfelt and beautiful virtual tribute honoring him. May his sweet soul swiftly, surely and safely rest in the hand of G-d forever. And, may you all take comfort and strength in your many precious memories.

    Our love to you, Valorie, and your dear ones … Jerry and Lynn (Parker) Harris

  • Sharri Steele Moody

    All that has been said of Charl is true. I am praying that within God’s will, Valerie and all of Charl’s family will be comforted, (Matthew 5:4), and that the witness that Charl was to them of kindness and leadership will be not only treasured, but carried on. WHS’61.

  • Richard Gulbrandsen

    Our deepest condolences. His remarkable legacy is found in his children and their children. “I beheld that the faithful elders of this dispensation, when they depart from mortal life, continue their labors in the preaching of the gospel of repentance and redemption, through the sacrifice of the Only Begotten Son of God, among those who are in darkness and under the bondage of sin in the great world of the spirits of the dead.” D&C 138:57

  • Karon Weisbrod Thomas

    Just now having read my emails I have missed all the services. I am sorry. I would have tried to be there. My husband and I extend our condolences to Valorie and her children and grandchildren. Charl was an individual that gave to the world only the best he had. He always gave to the solution rather than the problem. He will be always remembered by those who knew him as a strong leader wherever he was and where he probably is even now. May God bless him and may he rest in peace.

  • To the Riggs Family,

    It is hard to put into a few words what your Mom and Dad meant to the neighborhood. I know our family feels blessed to have grown up in the same Ward for decades. Charl Riggs was a part of the YM organization the entire time I was a teenager. We loved and respected him, and knew to follow him, or we got the boot. He pushed us all the time, and made us better in the process. My favorite story of Bro Riggs is how he helped us organize a retaliation against another scout troop at Camp Geronimo at night so we wouldn’t get caught – then covered for us when we were nearly caught. That was Bro Riggs! Work hard, play hard, no regrets. I was on those softball teams that won all the time. Many would be shocked at the amount of practice we had – each of us spent hours every week just hitting off a tee, or fielding grounders. It was church softball!! But we loved it! As hard and tough as Charl Riggs was, Val was as kind and soft. They were a great companionship. Long after I was married, I heard Charl was the Bishop of my home Ward and my first thought was longing to be a Priest again. That would have been fun. To the Riggs family, thanks for sharing your parents with all of us. We loved them, we miss them, and we won’t forget them.

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