Pauls Valley, OK, Pauls Valley Democrat

Local News

September 4, 2013

Former councilman reflects on service

People, community created a worthwhile tenure for Riddle — Admiration for those who step up and do something to better their community instead of just complaining about it will never be an unwelcomed commodity, but just as important is making sure one’s needs aren’t lost among the good deeds.

Such was the case for former Pauls Valley Mayor and Councilman Billy Riddle, who through 17 years of service always was pushing to make sure the people’s needs were taken care of, even if it meant a few personal sacrifices along the way.

From his days as a member of the planning and zoning board to the more than two terms as an elected official, it was a balancing act that usually paid off and only recently when he realized the time had come when he no longer felt confident juggling said responsibilities.

“I put in my time, wanted to finish, but it just didn’t happen,” said Riddle.

“It was time to get my priorities back in line.”

Though it was not one thing that led to Riddle ending his tenure, one item that ended up being the turning point toward it was the added weight of dealing with keeping the hospital doors open.

Ultimately it wasn’t until a recent bout of illness that he even had a moment to fully grasp that the time had come as hard as it was and during that he made the move with the resignation.

“The hospital on top of everything else made it more demanding,” said Riddle, noting again how all of the increased time away from his other responsibilities was not beneficial to everything from his family life to efficiently running his business as a real estate appraiser.

“It’s probably one of the hardest things to deal with.”

However, despite this, he is thankful to have served as long as he did and said much of it was motivated so long because of connections that come from growing up here and working along with his parents who have ties going back to 1969.

He feels quite a few things were accomplished since there has been quite a bit of continuity with his fellow government officials.

“I grew up dealing with the general public,” said Riddle. “I assumed people were satisfied because they never signed up to run against me.”

Some of the things Riddle was most proud of during his time on the council was seeing a new fleet of vehicles for the employees here, seeing the Longmire Lake note paid off three years ahead of time and various other accomplishments for the new locations for the police and fire departments.

He often preferred not to be the focus of attention and believes he never brought about any of these things on his own with credit given to everyone else first.

“This was not an I project, this was a we project…I am not better than any city employee or anyone else out there,” said Riddle

“You had a lot of other people making these decisions… People need to understand the citizens are not going to agree with every decision we make, but we have to take the whole city into account.”

Riddle, who continues to be shocked with compliments for the work he has done, noted that he will not seek to get back on the council in the future, but still wants to be available if he can help even if it is providing information or advice. The most he might consider in the future would be on one of the other community boards where there is shortage in participation.

As a proponent of speaking with action, he believes the only way the city will be able to prosper and keep things running smoothly is if more individuals step up to relieve those who have already given so much.

Riddle still plans to fully support a hospital tax, which should be an agenda item at the city council meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 10.

“If people don’t get involved we are wearing out the same group of people,” said Riddle.

“There is still a lot to be done.”

Text Only
Local News
  • Dancing VBS Good times for VBS volunteers

    Summer can provide a plethora of enriching opportunities for kids with plenty of time to spend. One of the most popular avenues has always been the good old-fashioned vacation Bible school.

    July 25, 2014 3 Photos

  • Pup up for adoption 7-25-14 Pauls Valley Pup up for Adoption


    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • One hurt in head-on wreck

    Authorities are not sure what caused a vehicle to veer to the left resulting in a head-on collision near Hennepin early Wednesday.

    July 25, 2014

  • Winners plentiful at peach festival

    With no shortage of visitors making the Stratford Peach Festival a summer destination, it was a win-win situation for all parties this past weekend.

    July 24, 2014

  • Indian Meridian and Grant Wreck Indian Meridian and Grant Wreck


    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Search on for new 911 boss

    The search for a replacement is now on after it was announced the coordinator of Garvin County’s 911 center is stepping down.

    July 24, 2014

  • Stratford Peach Festival 2014 PeachFest draws big crowd

    Unseasonably comfortable weather, a day full of family fun and one of the best fruit crops in recent years. Mix that together and you have one of the best-attended Stratford Peach Festival’s on record.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • ‘Evening in the Valley’ set

    It might still be summer but some in Pauls Valley already have an eye on a new school year right around the corner.

    July 23, 2014

  • PV City meetings set for 6 tonight

    The Pauls Valley City Council, PV Hospital Authority and Municipal Authority have set their meetings at city hall at 6 p.m. Tuesday.

    July 22, 2014

  • DHS Caregiver Awards Love of client pales next to awards

    On any given day one can find a good story about caregivers going the extra mile to meet the needs of acutely disabled individuals.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

Business Marquee

  • How You Want It When You Want It Today's Pauls Valley Democrat

    Now you can view and download the Democrat right to your desktop on the day the paper is published. Click here to get more information on the Democrat's e-Edition.





    e-mail request to

    April 20, 2011 1 Photo 1 Link

AP Video
Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kerry: No Deal Yet on 7-Day Gaza Truce Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Gaza Residents Mourn Dead Amid Airstrikes Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp Cumberbatch Brings 'Penguins' to Comic-Con Raw: Air Algerie Crash Site in Mali Power to Be Restored After Wash. Wildfire Crashed Air Algerie Plane Found in Mali Israel Mulls Ceasefire Amid Gaza Offensive In Case of Fire, Oxygen Masks for Pets Mobile App Gives Tour of Battle of Atlanta Sites