Funeral service for Firal Lee Ryder will be held at 1:00 pm on Tuesday, January 14, 2014 at First United Methodist Church in Natchitoches, LA with Rev. Doug De Graffenreid officiating. Interment will follow at Memory Lawn Cemetery in Natchitoches, LA. The family will receive friends from 5:00 pm until 8:00 pm on January 13, 2014 at First United Methodist Church, in the Crossroads Sanctuary, in Natchitoches, LA.
Firal Ryder, 85 years of age, passed away January 10, 2014. Firal was born July 20, 1928 to the late Alvin Ryder and Ruby Paul Ryder in Buckeye, LA. He was a graduate of Buckeye High School. Firal joined the Marine Corps during WWII. After returning home, he attended Northwestern State University, where he lettered in golf, and completed his bachelors degree. He was always an avid supporter of Northwestern State.
During his life, he served in many capacities, including the LA State Racing Commission under Gov. David Treen, the Board of Directors for AQHA and LTBA Assn., a member of the LA Cattleman's Assn., the Board of Directors for Blue Cross/Blue Shield of LA; the Hospital Administrator for Natchitoches Parish Hospital, was a leading breeder in 2009 with the LA Thoroughbred Assn., and was a member of the First United Methodist Church in Natchitoches. Firal was a resident of Natchitoches LA for over 50 years, where he was a cattleman and business owner, owning and operating several hotels. He loved his horses and his family. He believed in hard work and God. He always tried to help however he could and he really made a difference in this world for so many people. He was a genuine, caring man who will be deeply missed and always on the minds and in the hearts of his family and friends.
He is survived by his son Firal Clay Ryder and wife Belinda of Natchitoches, LA; one daughter, Ashley Jarnagin and husband Adam of Creston, LA; six grandchildren, Mandy Person of Seabrook, TX, Hanna Ryder of Natchitoches, LA, Emily Ryder of Natchitoches, LA, Alana Ryder of Natchitoches, LA, Hailey Jarnagin of Creston, LA, and Macey Jarnagin of Creston, LA; one sister, Jacqueline Ryder Mertens of Pineville, LA; one brother, Rudy Paul Ryder of Pineville, LA; and a host of nieces and nephews.
He is preceded in death by his wife, Joyce Dawson Ryder; his parents, Alvin Ryder and Ruby Paul Ryder; and two daughters, Dawnn Ryder and Lee-Anne Ryder;
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to be made to Northwestern State University or to First United Methodist Church in Natchitoches, in memory of Mr. Ryder.