1st Lieutenant Martin Anthony Riggan, Jr., 25, went to be with his Lord and Savior on December 22, 2010. Anthony was born to parents, Tony and Mary Jane Riggan, on April 9, 1985 in Little Rock, Arkansas. He is survived by his parents and sister, Maggie Riggan (and fiancÃ© Blake Chism), along with extended family and countless friends. Anthony graduated from Pulaski Academy in 2003. During his time at PA, Anthony served as Senior Class President, Honor Council President, and Representative on the Varsity Football Leadership Council. Anthony truly exemplified the school motto, "Honor Above All," receiving the Principal's Award, Outstanding Student Award for Overall Excellence, Quest for Character Award: Respect, in addition to many others. Fulfilling a life-long dream, Anthony attended the United States Air Force Academy, where he continued to excel personally and professionally. Anthony was named Outstanding Freshman for Squadron 36 and joined Squadron 2 for his remaining 3 years at the Academy, during which he served in numerous leadership positions. In his senior year, Anthony served as Group 1 Commander for the Cadet Wing, overseeing 1200 cadets and all activities going on throughout the Group. Anthony was also named Cadet Colonel, the highest rank possible for a cadet at the Academy. His Group outperformed all other Groups by at least 5 percentage points in all categories. Following graduation, Anthony began Undergraduate Pilot Training in Columbus, MS. Anthony continued to succeed in pursuit of his dream, from the T-6 Texan to the T-38 Talon and finally to the B-1B Lancer Strategic Bomber, the Air Force's most impressive airplane. Anthony received the "Top Gun" Award for Formation Flying and was presented with the Leadership Award by the local Air Force Association in Columbus. Anthony married his beautiful and supportive wife, Nicole Paterson Riggan of Monument, CO, in March 2009. The couple moved to Abilene, TX where Anthony began his B-1 training. The Riggans moved to Rapid City, South Dakota in June 2010; Anthony was scheduled to deploy in January 2011 to Qatar, where the B-1s are the current workhorses of the United States Air Force campaign in Afghanistan. Anthony's flight instructor had classified him as "exceptionally qualified" to pilot the aircraft. Anthony's legacy of honor and excellence lives on in the hearts and minds of all who were blessed to know him. His life verse, "For me to live is Christ and to die is gain" (Phil. 1:21) was laced in every aspect of Anthony's life. The epitome of a good-hearted man, Anthony loved others well and was respected by all. Although he excelled in all areas of life, Anthony understood his foremost purpose on this earth was to know the Lord and to make Him known to others. Surely his Heavenly Father met him with the words, "Well done, my good and faithful servant." To His unfading glory. A celebration of Anthony's life will be held at 1:00 PM on Monday, January 3, 2011 at Woodmen valley Chapel Worship Center, 90 E. Woodmen Road. In lieu of flowers, please consider the following memorials: "Anthony and Nicole Riggan Memorial Mission Scholarship", c/o BSU Alumni Association, P.O. Box 1832, Monument, CO 80132; Fellowship Bible Church, Little Rock, AR; Pulaski Academy College Preparatory, Little Rock, AR.
Published in The Gazette on Dec. 30, 2010.