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Lorita Riedel Rides Into Retirement

Lorita Riedel is always a bright spot in the Bear River community.

After 17 years at Bear River, Lorita Riedel, who is known for being sweet and helpful in the office, is retiring.
There is so much about Riedel that makes her such a unique addition to Bear River.
Lorita was born in San Antonio, Texas on Nov. 10, 1958. She has one sibling, a brother who is less than a year younger. In her childhood, she moved around a lot due to her father’s job with PG&E, so she grew up in a lot of different places.
“It gives me a lot more compassion for all new kids that have to move in the middle of the year since I had experienced it,” Riedel said.
Lorita went to high school in Selma.
“Raisin Capital of the world!” joked Riedel.
This is where she later met her high school sweetheart and husband, Ron.
After getting married in her early 20’s Lorita and her husband Ron moved to Tahoe City into a small cabin. But they only lasted there for one winter.
“It was so little, and all in one room — like as small as a bedroom!” Riedel said.
While looking for a new house, a friend of the couple suggested the Auburn area, and they’ve been here ever since.
Riedel works in the office now, but she originally worked at Bear River as a Special Ed aide for 10 years. “I really liked making bigger concepts simpler for the students, we really had a lot of fun,” Riedel said.
After working together for more than 17 years, Nanci Smith and Riedel have been through a lot together, especially when they worked hand in hand in Special Ed.
“Remember we were in the same room, so he would play really loud music, read a newspaper, and watch basketball,” Smith says about a teacher they both had to work with.
“And so, Mrs. Riedel and I would get really, really frustrated with it, and so I went and I bought a Ninja punching bag. We had a little room within our room, it was like a little office, and we would go in there when we were really really frustrated with him, and we would punch it,” said Smith.
“Yes we did. He was doing nothing, and we were working our tails off, so … ” Riedel said.
At the age of 30, Lorita was offered an opportunity to live in Africa with her family. This journey was funded by a ministry so they could stay for six months. While in Africa, Ron spent his time teaching blacksmithing to eight men from around Africa.
“He taught them so they would be able to build things from scraps they found, like broken car parts,” Riedel said.
As her husband was teaching, Lorita learned from a local woman how to make multiple African dishes so she could feed them.
Students love Riedel in the office and are sad to see her retire.
“She’s such a kind woman, always brightening my morning!” Baelen Carson, a sophomore.
Lorita and Ron also enjoy bike-touring together. In 2018 Ridel biked Alaska for three weeks, and later in 2019 went on a one week boat/bike tour in Croatia.
“I plan to do more when I retire!” Riedel said.

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About the Contributor
Briyelle Sikes
Briyelle Sikes, Staff Writer
Briyelle Sikes is a sophomore, and is in her first year of Online MultiMedia. She enjoys writing about recent events in the news and other topics. She also enjoys taking photos in her free time.
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