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Paul Dennis Riba
September 15, 1938 ~ January 28, 2024 (age 85) 85 Years Old
Spokane, WA – Paul Dennis Riba, age 85, passed away peacefully on January 28, 2024, in Spokane, WA. He was born on September 15, 1938, in Minot, ND. Paul is survived by his wife, Sandy of Spokane, WA; daughter, Katherine (Charlie) and 2 grandchildren, Paige and Charlie of Sandpoint, ID; daughter, Karen of Post Falls, ID and son, Brad and granddaughter, Ashley of Corona Del Mar, CA. Paul was preceded in death by his mother, Martha; father, Lothar; and brothers, Lothar Jr. and Jerry.
Paul grew up in Bismark, ND until his family moved to Sunnyvale, CA in 1955. He graduated from Mountain View High School in 1956 where he sang in the choir and played in the band. He attended San Jose State University where he studied Public Administration with a Business Administration minor. He also was in the Coast Guard reserve and was honorably discharged after completing his service. His aspirations to pursue City Management changed fairly quickly to pursuing a career in the grocery industry. He followed his father’s and brother’s path and started his grocery profession as an assistant manager at a Lee Bros store in Los Altos, CA. After a couple of years, he was promoted and moved his family to manage the Lee Bros store in Davenport, WA. Shortly after he became an entrepreneur by starting Riba Bros Inc. in 1968 with his brother Jerry. They purchased their first grocery store in Cheney, WA and over the next few years they added stores in Spokane, Colville, Ione, Coeur D’ Alene, and Post Falls. He enjoyed a 20+ year successful career in the grocery industry that included winning the 1971 IGA national retailer of the year with his brother. Paul exited the grocery business and continued his entrepreneurial spirit by starting a ServiceMaster franchise in 1993. He successfully built this business from the ground up until retiring in 2016.
Paul’s interests included snow and water skiing, hunting trips to Montana, riding horses with gentlemen on horseback, snowmobiling, singing in a barbershop quartet, and even playing some softball in his younger years. His activities were family-oriented as he often took his family on yearly snow skiing trips as well as weekend trips to Schweitzer. During the summer, he spent the majority of his free time with his family at the Riba cabin on Priest Lake, ID. For this, his family is grateful, as Priest Lake remains a special place in all of our hearts including his grandchildren. Paul was also a member at Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church.
Paul's family will be holding a private gathering to celebrate his life.
Please share your memories of Paul on his tribute wall.