Wayne T. Riggins

Wayne T. Riggins, age 90 of Wanblee, South Dakota, died Wednesday, September 28, 2011, at his home near Wanblee.

Wayne was born January 29, 1921, in Kinsley, Iowa, the son of Floyd "Pop" and Marie (Dugan) Riggins. In 1932, at the age of 11, the family moved to the Garner place on Bear Creek in Washabaugh County, South Dakota. Wayne attended Garner School through the eighth grade. In May 2005, he was honored at Kadoka High School's commencement ceremony as a veteran and was presented with an honorary high school diploma.

As a young man he bought a few cows and ranched until he was drafted into military service in 1944. Serving in the Army, Company C, 2nd Infantry Division, he saw active duty as a rifleman and supply personnel. His tour of duty took him throughout Europe during the Rhineland Campaign. He was honorably discharged in 1946.

On August 4, 1947, Wayne was united in marriage to Bonnie May Stephens at Wessington, South Dakota. They lived in Sioux Falls and Kingsley, Iowa during their first years of marriage. In 1949, they returned to South Dakota, and made their home on a ranch west of Wanblee. Sixty-four years of marriage was enriched by their four children, Stephen, Marla, Ella, and Sterling; 16 grandchildren; and 13 great-grandchildren. Wayne enjoyed working as a skilled brick layer and loved ranching with his brothers Rex and Harold and later his sons.

Wayne was a member of the Bennett County American Legion Post #240 for many years. One memorable highlight for him was attending the World War II Memorial Dedication in Pierre in 2001.

Survivors include his wife Bonnie of Wanblee; two sons Stephen Riggins and his wife Linda of Kadoka, and Sterling Riggins and his wife Jill of Wanblee; two daughters Marla Nelson and her husband Dan of Creighton, and Ella Hindman and her husband Troy of Kadoka; 16 grandchildren; 13 great-grandchildren; three sisters Cloreta Eisenbraun and Faye Eisenbraun, both of Kadoka, and Valene Perault and her husband Bud of Belvidere; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Wayne was preceded in death by his parents; six brothers Cecil, Rex, Harold, Lynden, Tuffy and Jerry; and one sister Ercell Albin.

Visitation was held 5-7 p.m. Friday, September 30, at Our Lady of Victory Catholic Church in Kadoka, and one hour preceding the services at the church on Saturday.

Mass of Christian Burial was held 10:30 a.m. Saturday, October 1, at Our Lady of Victory Catholic Church, with Father Bryan Sorensen as celebrant.

Interment with military honors was 1:30 p.m. Saturday, at the Wanblee Community Cemetery in Wanblee.

A memorial has been established.

Arrangements are with the Rush Funeral Chapel of Kadoka.

His online guestbook is available at www.rushfuneralhome.com


Saturday, October 1, 2011 - 10:30 a.m.

Our Lady of Victory Catholic Church

Kadoka, South Dakota


Father Bryan Sorensen


JoAnne Stilwell - Pianist

Samantha Nelson - Vocalist

"Here I Am Lord"

Shaun McKay - Vocalist

"God Must Be A Cowboy"


Josh Hicks - Blaine Hicks


Wayne's Grandsons

Zane Riggins - Cole Hindman

Clay Hindman - Wayne Hindman

Tom Riggins - Charlie Riggins

Robert Riggins - Nathan Riggins

Jake Nelson


Wayne's Granddaughters

Amber Cornella - Heather Riggins

Anna Garon - Samantha Nelson

Trena Riggins - Brigit Schofield - Abby Carlson


Saturday, October 1, 2011 - 1:30 p.m.

Wanblee Community Cemetery

Wanblee, South Dakota