Roy Riethmiller

“THE GOOD Lord knew where to put me.”

That was a comment from Roy Riethmiller in 2005, prior to an art show in Martins Ferry.

Riethmiller, who died Thursday at the age of 92, certainly knew what he was talking about.

The lifelong Ferry resident believed in helping the community, his church and others.

In 2008, he was inducted into the Martins Ferry Hall of Honor.

Purpose of the HofH, which is sponsored by The Citizens Bank, is “to acknowledge those citizens whose actions or accomplishments have affected, aided or brought fame to Martins Ferry.”

With his talent and contributions, he was more than qualified for the HofH designation.

HE PRODUCED more than 1,000 oil paintings and taught more than 6,000 students and 750 adults during his career. No one can determine how far his influence has spread in the world of art.

His paintings are displayed in many places around the Ohio Valley. His largest painting – measuring 5 feet tall and 25 feet long – is displayed at The Citizens Bank, and it shows Martins Ferry along the Ohio River.

His paintings also can be seen in other parts of the United States.

In 1955, he became art teacher in the Martins Ferry schools and retired a quarter of a century later. He taught art in the fourth grade through high school and also conducted art classes for adults.

This 1938 graduate of Martins Ferry High School saved money for college while working as a teller at The Citizens Bank. His college career was interrupted by World War II. He couldn’t be in combat because of a health issue, but he worked on anti-aircraft guns.

RIETHMILLER, a member of the First Presbyterian Church for approximately 80 years, served in various church offices and has helped the city in many ways. In recent years, he donated a painting of the former Martins Ferry High School to the Martins Ferry Area Historical Society so it can sell prints to raise funds.

Many residents are aware of his talents during the Christmas season because he designed ornaments with Ferry scenes for the Martins Ferry Area Chamber of Commerce for a decade.

RIETHMILLER no longer is with us, but the beauty that he created endures.