Michael Riley

Michael Dennis Riley

SHARPSBURG - Michael Dennis Riley, age 50, passed away following a lengthy illness on Sunday, January 12, 2020. Michael was born in Nash County, NC on May 1, 1969. He was preceded in death by his fathers, Willard Dennis Riley and William Randolph Cary.

A man best known for his contagious personality, Michael never met a stranger who wouldn't gravitate to his kindness and warm heart. He would always make it a point to greet others and when the time came, saying goodbye had a special meaning which was backed with well wishes and a friendly embrace. He would never hesitate to help another in need and his work ethic earned him deserving respect from many he worked with. With a heart of gold and coupled with a strong will and spirit, Michael always believed in doing things his way. He had a love for the outdoors, especially when it came to fishing. In addition, he enjoyed Washington Redskins football and was a Dale Earnhardt fan.

Michael leaves behind to cherish his memory, mother, Brenda Green Culpepper and husband Dennis; two sisters Nicole Denise Riley and Karen Cary Pappas and her husband Harry; his brother Matthew Cary and his wife Kim. He is also survived by his nephew Will Cary; and three nieces, Emma Scot Cary, Gralyn Maria Pappas, and Ava Claire Pappas.

A Celebration of Michael's Life will be held on Thursday, January 16, 2020 at 11:00 AM in the Chapel of Wheeler & Woodlief Funeral Home & Cremation Services with Dr. Jody Wright officiating. Visitation with the family will be from 10:00 AM to 10:45 AM prior to the service in the Atrium of Wheeler & Woodlief Funeral Home and briefly following the service in the Atrium. A private family burial will be held at a later date at Oakdale Cemetery in Spring Hope.

The family would especially like to thank Michael's aunt and uncle, Larry and Melinda Freeman, for their dedicated support and love during this most difficult time.

Flowers will be accepted or donations can be made in Michael's name to either Bowles Center for Alcohol Studies, CB# 7178 Thurston Bowles Building, Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7178, www.med.unc.edu/alcohol, or to the Cancer Research Institute, 29 Broadway, Floor 4, New York, NY 10006-3111, www.cancerresearch.org.

Arrangements entrusted to Wheeler & Woodlief Funeral Home & Cremation Services, 1130 N. Winstead Avenue, Rocky Mount, NC 27804. You may share memories and condolences with the family by visiting www.wheelerwoodlief.com.