LAWTELL- Rufus M. Riggs CSM, USA (Retired), died June 28, 2021, at his home in Cataula, Georgia. The son of Felicien Riggs and Eva Hawkins, he was born, December 25, 1942, in the rural area of St. Landry Parish. After graduating from Carter G. Woodson High School in Lawtell, LA, in 1961, he joined the Army on July 24, 1961, and served 28 years, retiring November 1, 1989, as Post Command Sergeant Major of Fort Devens, MA. In his military career he had overseas assignments in Germany (2), Panama, Vietnam, and Korea (2). His CONUS assignments were: Fort Jackson, SC; Fort Gordon, GA; Fort Polk, LA (2); Fort Bliss, TX; Fort Benning, GA (2); West Point, NY; and Fort Devens, MA. His military awards include: Legion of Merit, Purple Heart, Meritorious Service Medal (5) awards, Army Accommodation Medal (2), Good Conduct Medal (9), Non-Commission Professional Development (#5), Vietnam Cross of Gallantry, Combat Infantryman’s Badge, Expert Infantryman’s Badge, Parachutist’s Badge, and various other service medals.
Following his military service, he worked as Chief of various divisions in the Public Services Department of the Columbus Consolidated Government, moving up through the ranks and retiring after 17 years as the Director of Public Services.
He is preceded in death by his Father, Mother, Godfather, and a brother - Lenson Riggs. Survivors include his wife, Annette Riggs; Son, Antonio Riggs; Daughter, Heather Smith (Phillip); Grandchildren: Eva Riggs, Malcolm Riggs, Noah Smith, Brooke Smith; Great-Grandson, Anthony Riggs; Brothers: Wortie Riggs (Janice), Adam Riggs, Woodrow Riggs (Reita), Menson Riggs, Larrel Riggs; Sisters: Arabella Minick, Bernella Phelps (John), Anne Chenier (Kelly); and a host of nieces and nephews.
Throughout his life, he was an advocate for equality, fairness, and developing team members with strong solid leadership by example. In his retirement, he has been a strong supporter of Brown Bag of Columbus. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation in his honor to Brown Bag of Columbus, to Homeless Resource Network, or a local charitable organization of your choice.
Graveside services with full military honors will be 11:00 am, Tuesday, July 6, 2021 at Holy Family Cemetery, Lawtell, LA.
Sibille Funeral Home will be assisting with Graveside Services.