Earl T. Roider, Sr. was born on August 25, 1928, in Red Bud, Illinois. Helived and worked on the family farm until he moved to California in 1951 with the army. His life was changed forever when he met the spunky red head, Ruby Jane Massie. His love for her was strong and everlasting. After 54 years together he lost her to heaven, but his devotion and love continued over the last 11 years until he joined her on January 4, 2017, when cancer took his life.
Men like Earl T. Roider Sr. do not come around very often. He was “old school”, a man of integrity, where a handshake was better than a written contract. Earl was a kind, giving man who loved his family and worked very hard to make sure all were taken care of. He worked for the Western Pacific Railroad (Union Pacific Railroad) in Oroville and Stockton. He started as an electrician but as a self-taught man, he did many jobs at the railroad. He built the house he, his wife and two children lived in until 1969 in Oroville as well as the house in Stockton which he lived in until the end of 2016. After working for the railroad for 32 years, he sold solar water heaters and became a real estate agent. Earl’s love for woodworking was evident in the many items he built for his grandchildren and others including a rocking horse, doll cradle and a train replica that held bird seed.
Once he retired, his passion of the railroad continued. He was an active member of the railroad employee clubs where he was president for many years. He spent countless hours working to promote rail safety through his efforts with California Operation Lifesaver. Over the past 7 years, Earl gave 788 presentations.. In addition to the presentations, Earl built simulators of locomotive controls which gave people a sense of being in an engineer’s seat. He is well known, respected and loved throughout the railroading and volunteer world.
He is survived by his son, Earl T. Roider, Jr. and his wife Kimberlee; daughter, Toni (Roider) Hallenbeck and her husband Kirby; grandchildren, Ben Roider and his wife Gabrielle; Aaron Roider, Jessica Hallenbeck, and great-grandson, Jayden Roider as well as many brothers, sisters, nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his loving wife, Ruby Jane Massie Roider; daughter, Linda Roider; grandson, Michael (Mikey) Hallenbeck; parents, Anton and Marie Roider; brothers, Edwin, Elmer and Erwin Roider and sister, Elsie Stadter.
Services will be held at First Presbyterian Church at 31 East Vine Street, Stockton on Saturday, January 14, 2017, at 1 P.M. Donations may be made in Earl’s name to the Hospice of San Joaquin.