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Local soccer, swim booster Riner dies

A Farragut man known for his countless hours of service to youth soccer, swimming and physically and mentally challenged youth died unexpectedly last week.

Jim Riner, 53, who died of a heart attack Wednesday, May 7, was fondly remembered by other prominent members of Farragut’s soccer community.

“I don’t know how one person got so much done, it’ll take 10 people to replace him,” Farragut High School boys soccer head coach Wallie Culbreth said. “He held together so many things for soccer, the TOPSoccer for the handicapped kids, and you know he did the Prom of the Stars for the handicapped, which became a statewide thing.

“Jim was Mr. Soccer. ... He either coached or ran the leagues around here for years,” Culbreth added. “He was a great guy, he was my best friend. He’s going to truly be missed by people way down the road.”

Dennis Lindsay, FHS girls soccer head coach, labeled Jim “always straightforward, honest, a hard worker, just always shown class.”

Lindsay said Jim served as “a liaison between the [FHS] boys’ and girls’ teams. ... Anything the two teams worked on we could always get together on and take care of matters.”

Dave Stinton is a Farragut soccer parent and friend of Jim. “He has contributed so much to the community in terms of soccer,” Stinton said. “Jim has been a competitive team coach, a manager, and has been president of the soccer boosters.

“Always donating his time. Was easygoing. Really a fantastic dad and a great big loss to the community.”

As past president of Greater Knoxville Area Interclub Swim Association, Jim “was always a person there to help … he would contact me beginning of July to say, ‘whatever you need me to do, I’m there,’” said Tom Schumann of Jefferson City, president of Knox-area Interscholastic Swim League and a past GKAISA president. “He was always there. … He was a go-to person if I needed help on virtually anything.”

Riner, a plant manager at Chase Scientific Glass in Rockwood, is survived by wife, Kathie, and sons, Jameson, Jonathan, Jeremy and Joshua, and daughter, Jessica.


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