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Thomas L. Ridge
Colonel, United States Marine Corps
Illinois State Flag
From a contemporary press report:

Thomas L. Ridge, 84, a retired Marine Corps Colonel who was decorated for his part in the Korean War battle at Chosin Reservoir and who later was a Defense Department official, died of pneumonia September 13, 1999 at a nursing home in Concord, California.

Colonel Ridge was wounded as he led the 3rd battalion of the 1st Marine Division to safety during the retreat of U.S. forces from the reservoir.

He was awarded a Purple Heart and Silver Star.

He retired in 1964 after serving as an attache to Columbia and Ecuador and then worked for the Defense Department for 14 years. 

He was an assistant director in the office of the assistant secretary for international security affairs.

Colonel Ridge, a native of Chicago, lived in Potomac, Maryland,  before moving to California in 1995.

He was a member of St. Raphael's Catholic Church in Rockville and the American Kennel Club. His other honors included the Defense Meritorious Civilian Service Medal.

Survivors include his wife of 55 years, Helen Guarana de Barros Ridge of Concord; a son, Thomas L. Ridge II of Orinda, Calif.; and a grandson. A daughter, Karen Lee Ridge Moran, died in July.

Col, USMC (Ret.) (Age 84)

On September 13, 1999, loving wife of 55 years, Helen Guarana Ridge; one son, Thomas Lee II; daughter-in-law, Janice; and grandson, Trevor, all of Orinda, California. A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered on October 13, 12:45 p.m., at the Old Chapel, Fort Myer, Arlington, VA. Interment Arlington National Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Alzheimer's Association, 919 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 1100, Chigago, IL 60611.


On October 10, 1999. Loving wife of the late Col. Thomas Lee Ridge. Survived by one son, Thomas Lee II, daughter-in-law, Janice and grandson, Trevor of Orinda, CA. A Memorial Mass was held at Arlington National Cemetery October 13, 1999. Interment will be in Arlington National Cemetery. The family requests memorial donations be made to the Alzheimer's Association, 919 N. Michigan Ave., Ste. 1100, Chicago, IL 60611.

Ridge, Helen G
Born: 06/06/1916, Died: 10/10/1999
US Navy, LCDR, 
Res: Orinda, California
Section  66, Grave 4611, buried: 11/24/1999

Ridge, Thomas Lee
Born: 02/14/1915, Died: 09/13/1999
US Marine Corps, COL,
Res: Orinda, California
Section  66, Grave 4611, Buried: 10/13/1999

Posted: 15 October 1999  Page Updated: 4 September 2000 Updated: 7 July 2003 Updated: 3 November 2005
Silver Star Medal
Silver Star Medal

Purple Heart Medal
Purple Heart Medal

TL Ridge Gravesite PHOTO June 2003
Photo By M. R. Patterson, 27 June 2003