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Thomas Alpha Riggs
  • In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to:
  • MUSC Hollings Cancer Center
    P.O. Box 250955
    Charleston, SC 29425
  • In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to:
  • Hibernian Society Building Fund
    P.O. Box 134
    Charleston, SC 29402

Pause Growing Up by Bruce H. Zimmerman (ASCAP)
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“Very sorry to hear about your loss. I have fond memories of working in the cafeteria my senior year in high school with Tommy, Bobby and their dad! ”
1 of 21 | Posted by: Arthur "Skip" Dawson - FL

“To all my friends in the RIGGS family. Sorry to learn about TOMMY. We always had such a good laugh. A real prince of a guy. I will miss him ”
2 of 21 | Posted by: JIM Rike - W.Palm Beach, FL

“Prayers and condolences to the family . ”
3 of 21 | Posted by: Bobby and Nancy Gehlken - Awendaw, SC

“Tommy served all of those he knew as an upbeat, convivial, and sincere friend. ”
4 of 21 | Posted by: Tommy McQueeney - Mt. Pleasant, SC

“Tommy was such a gem. He always made me smile. He will be missed. My prayers go out to the Riggs family. ”
5 of 21 | Posted by: Tina Riggs - Meggett, SC

“Tommy leaves me with many fond memories. From Rutledge Ave. as a kid to work relations in later life his smile and humor will be missed. My prayers...Read More »
6 of 21 | Posted by: Ted Bowers - Charleston, SC

“Riggs Family - Sorry to hear of Tommy's passing. What a great man that so many will remember. Thoughts and prayers are with you all. ”
7 of 21 | Posted by: Matt Jones - Salisbury, MD

“While I am always saddened by this kind of news, at the same time, I am also relieved that the health burdens that Tommy had to carry has been lifted...Read More »
8 of 21 | Posted by: Ashley Gardner - Mt. Pleasant, SC

“We will always smile when we think of Tommy Riggs! What a beautiful, kind friend! He was a gift of good memories. And oh the joy he is surrounded by...Read More »
9 of 21 | Posted by: Burke and Ruth-Anne Hammes - SC

“So sorry for your loss. I knew To my from St. Andrews High. I was Sandy Mcknight. Great memories from high school. My heart is filled with love...Read More »
10 of 21 | Posted by: Sandy Hicks - Elbert, CO


11 of 21 | Posted by: Elmore Marlow - Charleston, SC

“I am saddened by the loss of this fine gentleman, Tommy Riggs. He was full of love, laughter, dance, jokes and sheer delight. I was blessed to be...Read More »
12 of 21 | Posted by: Kathy Gaffos - Mount Pleasant, SC

“Oh, Tommy. What a trip. You are now in the arms of your sweet loving Jesus and so very happy.It was a pleasure being related to you and the fun we...Read More »
13 of 21 | Posted by: Joy Cornwell - Charleston, SC

“Our prayers go out to the family. Mr. Riggs was always very kind to all of us here at Peeples Heating and Air. I loved talking with him. He was one...Read More »
14 of 21 | Posted by: Karla Donahoe - Charleston, SC

“Condolences and prayers to all the family. May happy memories fill your heart with comfort.Prayers and condolences.Barbara (Marino) Weaver Family ”
15 of 21 | Posted by: Barbara Weaver - Mt. Pleasant, SC

“I so remember Tommy in high school and afterwards. He had lots of tough health issues but he managed to keep going and keep smiling. Tommy's...Read More »
16 of 21 | Posted by: Libba King - Mt. Pleasant, SC

“I am so saddened to hear of Tommy's passing. Prayers go out for the Riggs family for peace and comfort. ”
17 of 21 | Posted by: Virginia Culbertson - Edgefield, SC

“So many memories flooded my mind when I heard of Tommy's passing. He was always that person who could make you smile. His sweet spirit will live on...Read More »
18 of 21 | Posted by: Allen (Cutts) Hutto - Petal, MS

“I was saddened to learn of Tommy's passing. He was a great friend and fraternity brother. Blessings to the Riggs family. ”
19 of 21 | Posted by: Jim Hollingsworth - Highlands, NC

“Tommy was a long time friend and fraternity brother. He never let his difficulties get him down. We know he will be the brother missed by all. Our...Read More »
20 of 21 | Posted by: Elliott and Carol Lynn Moore - SC

“Tommy Riggs was a fine representative of the Riggs family of Charleston. I remember his speaking of his near death experience many years ago. My...Read More »
21 of 21 | Posted by: Robert Stockton - Charleston, SC


Thomas Alpha Riggs of Charleston, SC, died at home in the early morning of Wednesday, August 23, 2017.

His Memorial Service will be held at J. Henry Stuhr Inc., Downtown Chapel at 4:00 p.m. on Friday, August 25th, with a celebration of life to follow at the home of Tommy and his smiley face gate-upstairs at 356 King Street.

Tommy attended both Charleston High and St. Andrews High School before graduating from the University of South Carolina. Tommy was a member of the Hibernian Society of Charleston and the Charleston Metro Exchange Club. He grew up working in The White House Grocery and Raley's Cafeteria, both on King Street, then later worked in preservation and historic building restoration. The "King of King Street" was a proud Charleston resident and community member and spent most of his life on King Street. He could often be found at any number of restaurants along the busy street or walking up and down, famously stretching his arms as he went. Thanks to God's grace and Tommy's fighting, strong-willed spirit, he miraculously survived a near death experience during his battle against an aggressive brain tumor over 39 years ago and has since lived a life focused on spreading God's love and joy. His humor therapy has impacted anyone who knew "Uncle Tommy." His experiences lead him to become significantly involved with Camp Bluebird and MUSC, sharing his story and smiles with all those he came in contact with. A cartoon smiley face was his calling card and is commemorated on the front gate of his building on King Street. He was a lover of laughter, popcorn, jokes, pranks, snow cone making, checkers, fiddler crab catching, cartoons, the Carolina Gamecocks, and his family.

Tommy is survived by his father, Bill Riggs; brothers, Bobby Riggs (Robin) and Ed Riggs (Becky); his five nieces and nephews, Wil Riggs (Kim), Becca Lesesne (Daniel), Henry Riggs (Maari), Ryan Riggs, and Sara Riggs; and his four great nieces and nephews.

In lieu of flowers, may be made to MUSC Hollings Cancer Center, P.O. Box 250955, Charleston, SC 29425 or the Hibernian Society Building Fund, P.O. Box 134, Charleston, SC 29413.