James “Jim” Ryder
- April 5, 2023
James “Jim” Ryder
James Vernon Ryder, 72, of Lexington, Ky., died on March 28. Jim was born on April 20, 1950, to Thomas and Carol Ryder in Des Moines, Iowa. After graduating from John F. Kennedy High School in Cedar Rapids, he went on to study history at the University of Iowa. He then completed a Master of History degree at the University of Connecticut. He later moved to Lexington, Ky., and was an active part of peace and social activism in the community.
He met and fell in love with Sarah through their shared activism. They were married in 1990 and enjoyed 33 years of a loving marriage. Jim and Sarah would go on to have two children, Sylvan and Mead. He was always proud of his children and in love with his wife.
Jim retired from the University of Kentucky health care system where he was a team leader in the physical plant division for 20 years. He was proud to contribute to keeping the hospital thriving.
Jim was always curious and had an amazing variety of interests including art, literature, politics, travel, and Kentucky basketball. He devoted time and energy to his own black and white photography. He enjoyed running and had a goal to “beat his age” in the Bluegrass 10,000 every year. He was rarely without a newspaper or a book in his hand. Most of all, he was interested in others. He would make friends, family and strangers feel important by asking thoughtful questions and truly listening to their responses.
He is survived by his wife, Sarah and children, Sylvan (Joey Yazell) and Mead. He is also survived by his siblings, Thomas (Suzy) Ryder, Beth (Dave) Hill, Paul Ryder and Amy (Jamie) Butters .
A memorial gathering will be held at the Carnegie Center in Lexington, Ky., from 12:30 to 2 p.m. on April 22, 2023.
In honor of Jim, please consider donations to the Lexington Public Library Foundation or Planned Parenthood.