Mr. Chester Albert Riley, Jr.

  • Died: July 30, 2019
  • Location: Boxford, Massachusetts

Peterson-O'Donnell Funeral Home

Peterson-O'Donnell Funeral Home
167 Maple Street, Danvers, MA 01923
Tel. (978) 774-6600

Tribute & Message From The Family


Message From The Family

Thank you for your support during this difficult time. Please enhance this tribute to Chet by adding your memories and photos.

BOXFORD – Mr. Chester Albert Riley, Jr. of Boxford, formerly of Melrose, beloved husband of Barbara A. (Latshaw) Riley, passed away July 30, 2019 at the Kaplan Family Hospice House in Danvers.

Born at St. Elizabeth Hospital in Brighton to the late Mary J. (vonShoppe) and Chester Albert Riley, he was raised and educated in Melrose.

A long-time employee of General Electric Company, he was Manager of Production Engine Quality Assurance. Although officially retired in 1997, he continued working for GE, on a contractual basis, an additional fourteen years for a total of fifty-six years. One of the highlights of his early professional career was providing aeronautical engineering support on a team that successfully converted GE horizontal jet engines to vertical jet engines used in the lunar landing research vehicle thus enabling astronauts to hover in space. Chet also worked on Presidential helicopter jet engines. Memberships at GE included the Management Association and the Elfun Society.

The day after graduating from Melrose High School, he and several friends enlisted in the United States Army serving in the Occupational Forces of WWII. Most of Chet's tour of duty was spent in Leghorn, Italy.

Following discharge from the Army, he graduated from Northeastern University. An avid conservationist, Chet served on both the Melrose and Boxford Conservation Commissions for over a decade in each community. In addition, he was Treasurer of St. Rose of Lima (Topsfield) St. Vincent de Paul Society for several years. All outdoor sports were enjoyed including swimming, hockey, skiing and golf. Striving for the perfect, weed-free lawn was a constant challenge; a skill acquired from working for the local landscaper during his high school years. Extensive travel was also enjoyed.

Chet is survived by his devoted wife, Barbara A. (Latshaw) Riley, his children: Chester A. Riley & his wife, Jodi Chaisson-Riley of Northwood, N.H., Christina Riley Hefler & her husband, Gregory D. of Milton, Stephanie Riley Platt & her husband, Andrew W. of South Hadley & Juliana Riley Delahunty & her husband, William J. Jr of Lincoln, as well as the pride and joy of his life; his grandchildren: Hanna Riley Hefler, William Gannon Hefler, Julia Chaisson-Riley, William Hunter Platt, Riley Amelia Platt, William John Delahunty, III, Aengus Riley Delahunty & Cashel Thomas Delahunty. He is also survived by his sister, Eleanor M. Kearns of Norfolk, VA, several nieces, nephews, his godson, George W. "Skip" Crowley, and his GE family. He was the brother & brother-in-law of the late Virginia & Charles Kenneth Buckley. He was a dedicated and loving husband, father and grandfather who will be dearly missed.

ARRANGEMENTS: His funeral will be held from the Peterson-O'Donnell Funeral Home, 167 Maple St., (rte 62) Danvers, Tuesday, August 6th at 9:30 A.M. followed by his funeral Mass in St. Rose of Lima Church, 12 Park St., Topsfield at 10:30 A.M. Relatives and friends invited. Burial in Ridgewood Cemetery, North Andover. Visiting hours Monday, Aug. 5th from 4 to 7 P.M. Memorial gifts may be made in Chester's memory to St. Rose of Lima, St. Vincent De Paul Society, the Christ Initiative, 22 Boston St., Middleton, MA 01949 or to the Kaplan Family Hospice House, 75 Sylvan St., Danvers, MA 01923. To share a memory or offer a condolence, please visit