William "Bill" Joseph Riordan
William “Bill” Joseph Riordan, 65 passed away on Jan. 26, 2009 in Amarillo, Texas. He was born Aug. 8, 1943 to Harry (Lefty) Riordan and Helen Miller Farbro in Chicago, Ill.
He was preceded in death by his father in 1988.
He is survived by his wife Cynde of Amarillo, Texas; two daughters Kim West (Peter) of Dallas and Cathy Basinger (Bailey) of Reno; one son John David Riordan of Rockford, Ill.; his mother Helen Farbro of Borger, Texas; four brothers John Riordan (Barbara) of Dayton, Mike Riordan (Joann) of Las Vegas, Steve Riordan of Reno and Paxton Farbro (Marie) of Stinnett, Texas; sister Nancy Espinoza (Rico) of Las Vegas; uncle Bill (Joyce) Riordan of Carson City; cousin Leo Luchetti of Dayton; five grandchildren and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
He enjoyed a career as a casino executive in Carson City that spanned four decades. He began his local calling as a casino professional as Director of Security at the Ponderosa Casino in 1967 in Reno, from there he moved to Barneys at South Tahoe in 1969 where he and his brother John introduced fantasy football 38 years ago to the Carson Valley. In 1972 he went to work at the Ormsby House and worked for the Ormsby, the Carson Station and the Pinon Plaza for 32 years.
Possessed with an encyclopedic knowledge of all sports he was a master of boxing history and could often be seen holding court while watching the action at the Mother Lode (now the Carson Station) and Pinon Plaza where he served as General Manager for both operations. He loved playing golf with George, Mark, Jeff and John every Monday for many years.
A third generation gambling expert he was admired by his employees and customers for his laid back demeanor and was regarded by his fellow casino executives and professional gamblers as one of the sharpest table games managers of all time.
As an accomplished athlete he also coached many local area youth baseball and adult softball programs in Carson City. Bill and Cynde were avid animal lovers and at one time had three dogs, seven cats and a parrot. He had a sign at his house that read “welcome to the zoo”, they were very lucky animals.
An old fashioned Irish wake celebrating Bill’s life will be held at the Station Grille (across the street from the Carson Station). The festivities will begin at 1 p.m. and last into the wee hours Sunday, February 8. The celebration of Bill’s life will include a bar, vittles (what Bill called food) music and a rousing tribute to the honor, talent, wisdom, kindness, courage and wit of the man that so many in Northern Nevada were fortunate enough to call friend.
Those planning to attend please RSVP John Riordan at 246-3999 no later than Saturday, February 7.
Boxwell Brothers Funeral Directors of Amarillo, Texas are caring for his final arrangements.