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Mary Louise (Swinehart) Riester

July 26, 1945 ~ May 28, 2019 (age 73)

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OZARK…. Mary Lou Swinehart Riester, a resident of Ozark, died early Tuesday morning, May 28, 2019 at her home after a hard fought battle with cancer. She was 73.

            Graveside services will be held at 10:00 A.M. Friday, May 31, 2019 in Barrancas National Cemetery, Pensacola, Florida. Fuqua Bankston Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements. The family will receive friends from 5:00 until 7:00 P.M. Thursday at the funeral home.

            Mrs. Riester, daughter of the late Jack Raymond Swinehart and Mary Elizabeth Seay Swinehart, was a native of Akron, Ohio. She was a 1963 Graduate of Coventry High School in Akron and received a Bachelor’s Degree in English Literature from Akron University. Mrs. Riester taught English Literature in public school in Ohio, Alabama, Indiana, and Texas while being a full-time military spouse. She formerly lived in various locations in the United States, including Ozark in earlier years and overseas while her husband served in the United States Army. Mrs. Riester returned to make her home in Ozark in 2016. She enjoyed spending time with her children and grandchildren, reading, skiing, golf, and horseback riding. Mrs. Riester is preceded in death by her husband, Gary Robert Riester (Major, United States Army, Retired); her brother, Jack Swinehart (Major, United States Army, Retired).

            Surviving relatives include her daughter, Melissa Beth Hartsell (Major United States Army) and her husband, Sidney Hartsell (CWO3 United States Army), Hopkinsville, KY; three sons, Gerad R. Riester (Major United States Air Force, Retired) and his wife, Jean (Lt. Col., United States Air Force, Retired); Justin Riester (Lt. Colonel, United States Air Force) and wife, Christina; and Robbin Riester (Major, United States Air Force) and wife, Melissa Riester (Major United States Air Force); two sisters, Jane  Griffin (Dennis), Akron, OH and Debbie Adams (Cliff), Kansas City, MO; sister-in-law, Faye Swinehart, Ozark; brother, Richard Swinehart (Connie), Dothan; eight grandchildren, Liberty Hartsell, Elaina Riester, Anneliese Riester, Madeline Riester, Brooke Riester, Katherine Riester, Allison Riester, and Nathaniel Riester.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Mary Louise (Swinehart) Riester, please visit our floral store.


May 30, 2019

5:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Fuqua Bankston Funeral Home
508 Faust Avenue
Ozark, AL 36360

Graveside Service
May 31, 2019

10:00 AM
Barrancas National Cemetery
1 Cemetery Road, Naval Air Station
Pensacola, FL 32508

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