Donald P. Ryder, Architect of Black Heritage Sites, Dies at 94


Donald Porter Ryder was born on Aug. 28, 1926, in Springfield, Ohio. His mom, Emma Marie (Belsinger) Ryder, died when he was 10. His father, Earl Ryder, a chemist, then married Miriam Curtis, who raised Don and his two siblings in Dayton, Ohio.

After serving with the Army Air Forces from 1945 to 1947, Mr. Ryder enrolled within the University of Illinois as a chemistry main however quickly discovered that chemistry wasn’t for him. “My father was always a talented artist and painter,” stated his daughter Natalie Ryder Redcross, an affiliate professor at Iona College in New Rochelle, “so he figured he’d try architecture instead, and found his strength in drafting and design.”

He graduated in 1951 with a bachelor’s diploma in structure.

In 1957 he married Shauneille Gantt Perry in Chicago, the place he was employed by the large worldwide agency Skidmore, Owings & Merrill and labored on the design of the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado.

In addition to his three daughters, he’s survived by his spouse; his sister, Bernadine Ryder Matthews; and 4 grandchildren. His brother, Bob, died in 2007. Mr. Bond died in 2009 at 73.

In 1959, the couple moved to New York, the place Mr. Ryder labored for a number of corporations, together with Marcel Breuer and Harrison & Abramovitz. He helped plan Lincoln Center and was director of campus planning for Borough of Manhattan Community College.

“The whole saga of Bond Ryder, I think, happened at just a particular right point in time, at the end of the ’60s,” Mr. Ryder informed Professor Goldstein in 2019. “It was when the communities were demanding at least some kind of say as to who their consultants would be. And there we were, qualified consultants with an office.”



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