Joseph Henry Riddick, Jr., age 85, of Virginia Beach, VA, known to many as “Ole Doc Joe” died peacefully on October 21, 2023, surrounded by loved ones. He was born March 22, 1938 to Joseph Henry Riddick and Nancy Eloise Gordon of Lynchburg, VA, grandparents, Eloise Parker and Horace Blair Gordon of Bedford VA, and Nannie Howison and Joseph Henry Riddick of Lynchburg, VA.
Growing up Joe spent much time in the mountains and on his family farm in VA. Gardening became his lifelong therapy, taught by his kin alongside his brother Dan. Joe lovingly fed his family and many others from his enormous vegetable gardens. He grew up in the Episcopal church, and was active in leadership and music in churches he attended throughout his life.
He came from an exceptionally musical family, learning to play guitar from his mother at a very early age. Many of his children and grandchildren exhibit this lovely talent. He was particularly interested in preserving traditional and mountain folk music. He sang, composed, and played multiple instruments.
Joe’s many hobbies filled his spare time including woodworking, ham radio, hiking, sailing, prolific reading in every genre, and cooking. He was well known for his buttermilk biscuits, Yorkshire pudding, and hollandaise sauce.
Joe graduated from Duke University Phi Beta Kappa, an A.B. Duke Merit Scholar. He attended Duke University Medical School, graduating in 1962 with a degree of Doctor of Medicine. He trained as a Pathologist at Duke and was certified by the American Board of Pathology in both Anatomic and Clinical Pathology in 1966. His career in academic and clinical Pathology was exemplary. Later in life he trained in Biomedical Ethics at the University of Virginia, establishing a network for this new field in his community.
Joe met his beloved wife, Marceile, at Duke during their freshman year, they married in Anderson, SC in 1960, and together raised four children. They traveled to all seven continents side by side, using every mode of transportation available in an era without the internet or cell phones, though Joe was never without his pocket knife, bandana, and umbrella.
Joe is survived by his wife of 63 years, Marceile Ballentine Riddick of Virginia Beach, VA; brother and sister-in-law, Dr. Daniel H. Riddick and Louisa Spruill Riddick of Glade Hill, VA; children: Marcey Setzer and husband Ward Setzer of Hillsborough, NC, Ginnie Barringer and husband Tom Barringer of Charlotte, NC, Blair Riddick of Hood River, OR, and Amy Riddick of Richmond, VA; grandchildren: Joshua Setzer and wife Nadia Setzer of Chapel Hill, NC, Cameron Setzer of Culver City, CA, Casey Collins of Durham, NC, Claire Collins of Raleigh, NC, Lula Lipman and Zellie Lipman of New York, NY, and Clem Fuller of Richmond, VA; niece, Ellen R. Russo; nephew, Daniel Riddick; and many other loving cousins and individuals.
A “Celebration of Life” is planned for a later date. Donations may be made in Joe’s memory to the Alzheimer’s Association, Southeastern VA Chapter at 6350 Center Suite Dr. Suite 102, Norfolk, VA 23502.