John Hall Ries, 59 fun-filled years old, died under hospice care on May 18, 2016 from liver failure due to alcoholism. He was born in Algoma on Nov. 20, 1956 as a “bonus baby” to Peter and Jane (Hall) Ries.
John was a bright, kind, fun-loving person throughout his life and touched many lives with his quick wit, winning smile – a real people person. He made friends wherever he went and would give you the shirt off his back.
Early in his life, his love of music lead him to pursue a career as a rock star. He grew his hair, joined a band, and moved to California under a contract with CBS records as a singer. He also loved the outdoors and had some of the greatest talks with friends while hiking.
John also loved aviation. He took flying lessons and went with Dave Miller to the EAA and flew in formation with Dave’s T-34. Once, while returning to the airport in Jamaica, the pilot Norman let John fly the plane along the coast at 1,000 feet!
John and Vicki Davis experienced “love at first sight” across the room at a restaurant, both asking friends about the other at the same time! Later they met in the summer of 1984 and worked together at the Ivanhoe Restaurant in Jacksonport. It wasn’t long when they realized that they should stay together and were married in Jamaica in 1986 at Cheeri Winds Villa, staying there for six weeks!
John became the bar manager at Casey’s Inn Supper Club where folks will tell you he was the best! He worked there for 22 years – always a smile and a laugh. John adopted daughter Tara at age 8 – because she wanted to be a Ries too.
Over the years John and Vicki traveled to Jamaica whenever possible to visit brother Glen. John loved to travel, and have parties for friends and co-workers at the family cottage in the summer. John and Vicki loved to entertain friends with their love of cooking in their “2 cook kitchen.” Later, he worked at Coyote Roadhouse until the neuropathy became too much. After many hospitalizations and surgeries, he became disabled. John’s attitude remained positive in spite of this. They continued to travel to the Canadian Rockies, Alaska, Tahiti, and on the Mississippi, aboard the “American Queen” Steamboat.
John was loved by many and will be greatly missed. He is survived by his wife Vicki, daughter Tara Schnick, Sheboygan; grandchildren: Mason and Kaia Schnick and Jordan Xiong; mother Jane Ries, Casco; brother Peter (Debbie) Ries, Casco; sister Ann (Kent) Harrison, Sturgeon Bay; brother Lenford “Glen” Wilson, Jamaica, West Indies; mother-in-law, Pat (Gerry) Barlament, Sturgeon Bay; brother-in-law Scott Davis, sister-in-law, Michele (Brian) Ferron; nieces and nephews: Liz, Jonathan, Kenan, Ben, Seth and their children; cousins: David, Marcy, Lola “Toad”, Jody, Jamie and their families.
He was preceded in death by his father and father-in-law.
A celebration of John’s life was held May 23. According to his wishes there will also be a jerk chicken cookout in the near future.
Special thanks to all the friends and family who were able to come and comfort us during our journey – extra big thank you to nurse Jo – you hide your halo and wings so well and we couldn’t have done it without you!
Motto to live by: Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely with an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, martini in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming, “WOO HOO, what a ride!”