Cover photo for Thomas Everett Riney's Obituary
Thomas Everett Riney Profile Photo
1940 Thomas 2023

Thomas Everett Riney

December 30, 1940 — November 29, 2023



      Long time Wood River Valley Farrier, Thomas  Everett Riney, died on November 29, 2023. He served the valley equestrian community for nearly 50 years with a mix of honesty, humor, and knowledge that will live on in the apprentices that studied under him. What is lesser known is his life before becoming, arguably, the Wood River’s best Farrier.

      Tom was born in Owensboro, Kentucky in 1940. He was the eldest of seven with four brothers and two sisters,(survived by Mike, Phil, Ann, and Mary). Shortly after graduating high school, he joined the army where he rose to the rank of Sergeant. Luckily for him, the U.S. was still a few years away from being directly involved in Vietnam. After his tour of duty he went to college on the G.I. bill and nearly completed his bachelors in chemistry before deciding to move on and pursue music.  Growing up, he embraced a lifelong love for Kentucky Bluegrass and played first the standup bass, and then the electric. After moving to Southern California, he worked within the L.A. music industry for a number of years which culminated in a top 40 hit “Let’s Get it Together“ with his band  Country Coalition. It was at this time he met and married his first wife, Emily, in 1964. They had two children, a daughter, Dante, in  1964 and a son, Ian, in 1967. They divorced in 1968.

       In order to support the troops in Vietnam, he toured three times with the USO in ’67 and ‘68. When he returned to the L.A. area, he took up freelance writing for local newspapers and won  a prestigious journalism award from Governor Reagan for the LA Times Story of the Year that exposed welfare fraud. The monetary compensation allowed him to enroll in a farrier program while he lived in Malibu.

         Tom married his second wife, Nancy, in 1971 and shortly after, they finished two more USO tours in Viet Nam. When they returned to the states, they moved to the Wood River Valley, where he continued to play music when bookings allowed and began building his reputation as a Farrier. His final album with Country Coalition was “Potato Pickers” in 1978. As his customer base grew, Tom expanded his knowledge by constantly learning from the best in the business, attending seminars, and participating in American Farrier Association annual events. Eventually, he ended up teaching in many seminars and contributing to AFA conferences. He divorced for the second time in 1983.

         Tom married his third wife, Jacque Lindberg, in 1991. He regarded her as the love of his life. They settled in Bellevue and lived contentedly until 2019 when Jacque died. Tom continued to work for another year, and then retired in 2020. He was diagnosed with stage, four lung cancer in July 2023. He is survived by two ex-wives, Nancy and Emily, and two children, Ian(Lisa) and Dante.

        A few paragraphs to sum up the life of a very eclectic individual. Those who called him friend were guaranteed loyalty, an honest opinion, and a laugh at his colorful expressions and hyperbolic descriptions. The valley is fortunate to have experienced such a colorful individual who was truly a legend in his own mind.

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