Merry Christmas from Paul and Dottie Ridenour 2008


It has been three years since my last Christmas letter.  It you are unfamiliar with past letters, please visit my webpage –


A lot has happened in three years.  My parents, Robert and Mary Alice Ridenour, have been married now for 53 years.  They married on November 18, 1955, and my older brother Dale was born one week later.  Dad and mom are both 72 years old and in good health.  Dad recently told mom that he never wants to live in a vegetative state, dependent on some machine.  He said if that ever happens, go ahead and unplug him.  So mom unplugged the TV set.


Many of you know that I play drums and have been playing for church choirs and praise and worship bands in Southern Baptist churches since I was age 12.  I was inspired for the first time in my life to write a praise song.  You are welcome to incorporate it into your worship services.  The copyright is pending.

I joined the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War as my 2nd great grandfather George T. Ridenour fought for the North from the state of Indiana.  We have no idea what his middle name was but we are fairly certain it is not Taliban. I also joined the Sons of the American Revolution because my 5th great grandfather Mathias Reitenauer was a Patriot from the state of Maryland.  Some of you may remember Mathias Reitenauer’s place in history.  He was chosen over Justus as the 12th Apostle after Judas committed suicide.  It’s all right here – Acts 1:23-26.


I have enjoyed going to some of Dottie’s Daughters of the Republic of Texas meetings as one learns a lot about Texas history and the Alamo.  In fact, when Davy Crockett saw 4,000 Mexicans outside the Alamo, he turned to Bowie and said “Jim, are we landscaping today?”


On April 27, 2009, the PBS mini-series “We Shall Remain,” part of the American Experience program, will feature Dottie’s 4th great grandfather and Cherokee Chief Major Ridge.  Major Ridge was assassinated along with his son John and nephew Elias Boudinot on June 22, 1839.  Although Ridge was a good-looking man, he is not as attractive as Dottie -


My younger brother David and his family are always in the Christmas musical at First Baptist Church in Allen, TX.  Not sure why Elvis would be in a Christmas musical, but David played the role.  If Elvis were still alive, he would have died after David’s performance.


My chiropractor Dr. Timothy Lanier has done wonders for my back.  I am pain free thanks to his magic fingers.  I am so thankful that he was not sent to federal prison like my dentist.


I was fortunate to meet my 2nd cousins Dawn Ridenour and her brother Maki twice this year.  I had only met Dawn once when she was around age 4 and I was age 12 back in the 1970s.  She spent much of her life in Japan but is now in Portland, OR.  Besides me, Dawn is the best looking “Ridenour” I know.


Dad, David, and I went on a road trip to DC for our first cousin Jeff Pfiffner’s wedding.  David brought his Garmin Nuvi 205 and we really liked it.  However, we think it might be defective as the British female voice kept repeating “Dave, how come you never pay attention to me?,” “Why are you turning me off?,” and “I told you to turn right, you bloody idiot!”


Dottie and I visited Paris, Dublin, Moscow, Italy, Athens, Palestine, Cypress, Boston, Atlanta, Victoria, Beverly Hills, and Santa Fe.  It was a long drive as Texas is a large state.

Mother Mary and Dale,1955               Mom 2008                                          Dad

Dr. Timothy Lanier                     David as Elvis           Nephews Rusty and Grant Ridenour
Dottie                               Mathias, Patriot and Apostle   Dawn Ridenour and husband Ryan Leffel