Clifford Risley Jr. (1925 - 2016)

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Clifford Risley
1925 - 2016
Born
January 16, 1925
Death
May 26, 2016
Last Known Residence
Moorpark, Ventura County, California USA
Summary
Clifford Risley Jr. was born on January 16, 1925. He was born to Adam Clifford Carl Risley and Henrietta Jeanette Tappy, with siblings Marjorie and Esther. According to his family tree, Clifford was father to 3 children. He married Berneice Striebel, and they gave birth to Cheryl "Cheri" Lynn Risley, Bruce Paul Risley, and Clifford Randall "Randy" Risley. He died on May 26, 2016 at age 91. We know that Clifford Risley Jr. had been residing in Moorpark, Ventura County, California USA.
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Updated: February 6, 2019
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Clifford Risley, Moorpark

As his B-24 descended into the steep canyon in what is now Taiwan, Moorpark resident Clifford Risley watched with fear as the three bombers before his were shot down by heavy ground fire.

THEY MADE IT BACK—Paul Miller, seated far left, gathers with fellow crew members around the engine of a B-17 Flying Fortress after narrowly escaping death during a dangerous mission to bomb a Nazi rail yard in 1944. The B-17 pilot, Lt. John “Jack” Furrer, far right, shakes the hand of thefighter pilot who helped the damaged plane make it back to safety. Courtesy of Nannette Furrer THEY MADE IT BACK—Paul Miller, seated far left, gathers with fellow crew members around the engine of a B-17 Flying Fortress after narrowly escaping death during a dangerous mission to bomb a Nazi rail yard in 1944. The B-17 pilot, Lt. John “Jack” Furrer, far right, shakes the hand of thefighter pilot who helped the damaged plane make it back to safety. Courtesy of Nannette Furrer “It was scary,” said the WWII veteran, who was 19 at the time. “There was a mountain range on both sides (of the canyon), and the Japanese had it protected with aircraft guns at all altitudes.”

Clifford Risley, Moorpark

As his B-24 descended into the steep canyon in what is now Taiwan, Moorpark resident Clifford Risley watched with fear as the three bombers before his were shot down by heavy ground fire.

THEY MADE IT BACK—Paul Miller, seated far left, gathers with fellow crew members around the engine of a B-17 Flying Fortress after narrowly escaping death during a dangerous mission to bomb a Nazi rail yard in 1944. The B-17 pilot, Lt. John “Jack” Furrer, far right, shakes the hand of thefighter pilot who helped the damaged plane make it back to safety. Courtesy of Nannette Furrer THEY MADE IT BACK—Paul Miller, seated far left, gathers with fellow crew members around the engine of a B-17 Flying Fortress after narrowly escaping death during a dangerous mission to bomb a Nazi rail yard in 1944. The B-17 pilot, Lt. John “Jack” Furrer, far right, shakes the hand of thefighter pilot who helped the damaged plane make it back to safety. Courtesy of Nannette Furrer “It was scary,” said the WWII veteran, who was 19 at the time. “There was a mountain range on both sides (of the canyon), and the Japanese had it protected with aircraft guns at all altitudes.”

“We were under heavy fire,” said Risley, a navigator, who left active duty in 1945. “We got shot at, but not fatally. . . . I felt like God was protecting us.”

The B-24s gradually gained altitude to climb out of the enemy’s range.

It was but one of 44 missions Risley flew in World War II.

Thankful to be alive, the Indiana native, who spent 17 years in the reserves, will join his fellow members of the American Legion during the American Legion Post 502’s Memorial Day service on Mon., May 27 in Moorpark.

Monday is an important day, not just for veterans but for all Americans, said Jim Carpenter, the Moorpark post’s adjutant. “We need to honor the sacrifices made by the young men and women who put their lives on the line for our country.”

Risley, a retired research director for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in Chicago, said his memories of the war remain fresh in his mind.

“You live with it all of your life,” he said. “Every day something brings back memories.”

The married father of three said he looks forward to catching up with other local veterans.

“There’s a special bond between anybody who serves,” he said. “You feel like you’re brothers.”

—Stephanie Sumell
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Biography
Clifford Risley Jr.
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Clifford Risley Jr.
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Moorpark, Ventura County, California USA
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Clifford Risley was born on
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Education

Ball State University

Religion

Methodist

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WWII and post war Reserve.

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Clifford Risley Jr., father to 3 children, passed away on May 26, 2016 at 91 years old. He was born on January 16, 1925. He was born to Adam Clifford Carl Risley and Henrietta Jeanette Tappy, with siblings Marjorie and Esther. According to his family tree, he married Berneice Striebel, and they gave birth to Cheryl "Cheri" Lynn Risley, Bruce Paul Risley, and Clifford Randall "Randy" Risley. We know that Clifford Risley Jr. had been residing in Moorpark, Ventura County, California USA.

Refresh this page to see various historical events that occurred during Clifford's lifetime.

In 1925, in the year that Clifford Risley Jr. was born, in July, the Scopes Trial - often called the Scopes Monkey Trial - took place, prosecuting a substitute teacher for teaching evolution in school. Tennessee had enacted a law that said it was "unlawful to teach human evolution in any state-funded school". William Jennings Bryan headed the prosecution and Clarence Darrow headed the defense. The teacher was found guilty and fined $100. An appeal to the Supreme Court of Tennessee upheld the law but overturned the guilty verdict.

In 1939, he was merely 14 years old when in May, Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, the first full-length animated film, reached a total international gross of $6.5 million which made it (to then) the most successful sound film of all time. First released in December 1937, it was originally dubbed "Disney's Folly" but the premiere received a standing ovation from the audience. At the 11th Academy Awards in February 1939, Walt Disney won an Academy Honorary Award - a full-size Oscar statuette and seven miniature ones - for Snow White.

In 1965, Clifford was 40 years old when from August 11 to 16, riots broke out in Watts, a Black section of Los Angeles. An allegedly drunk African-American driver was stopped by LA police and, after a fight, police brutality was alleged - and the riots began. 34 people died in the rioting and over $40 million in property damage occurred. The National Guard was called in to help the LA police quell rioting.

In 1973, at the age of 48 years old, Clifford was alive when on January 28th, the Paris Peace Accord was signed - supposedly ending the Vietnam War. Hostilities continued between North and South Vietnam and the U.S. continued to bomb. But by August 15, 1973, 95% of American troops had left Vietnam. The war ended in 1975 with the fall of Saigon.

In 1986, Clifford was 61 years old when on September 8th, the Oprah Winfrey Show went into national syndication. A popular talk show, it was number 1 in the ratings since its debut. The last show aired on May 25, 2011.

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