Francis R. Ridley, Jr.
February 16, 1926 – January 16, 2006
On January 16, 2006, Francis R. Ridley, Jr., age 79, died at Holy Cross Hospital after a short illness.
As an attorney, Mr. Ridley devoted the last twenty years of his life to representing individuals impaired or disabled by addiction to alcohol. He argued a number of significant cases under the Americans with Disabilities Act in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. His colleagues considered him extraordinarily empathetic and lauded him for accepting cases most lawyers would not take because of the long odds.
Mr. Ridley was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and graduated from Temple University. He obtained a law degree from New York University and thereafter a Masters in Business Administration and a degree in counseling from the University of Maryland, College Park.
Prior to laws school, he engaged in advertising and publicity work with Remington Rand/Univac, the Charles Brunelle Co., and Stewart Dougall & Associates. His lengthy career in federal service included legal positions in the Department of Labor, the Civil Rights Commission, and the Department of Defense. After he retired from the government, he entered private practice. Notably, he was a founding member of LANCER; a legal advocacy network of lawyers and mental-health professionals devoted to enforcing the rights of employees who found themselves impaired by alcohol. During World War II, Mr. Ridley served in the U.S. Army for four years and was honorably discharged with the rank of Corporal.
He was predeceased by his wife, Dorothy (Dana) Ann Castree, who died in November 2004. Prior marriages to Jane Sprouls King, Bonnie Glass, and Elinor Shantz ended in divorce.
Mr. Ridley leaves three step-children from his fourth marriage, Mark Stickels of Silver Spring, Katherine Hare of Arnold, and Scott Stickels of Lothian, and eight step-grandchildren.
John G. Gill, Jr.