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In Memory of Erik Riedel

Amanda Brock
6th July 2024

To read of the loss of someone so kind and clever, who had become an important part of our OpenUK community is heartbreaking. I am sad to share that Erik passed away on 30 June 2024.

Erik and I first met in 2022 at All Things Open having engaged via social media during the pandemic. We talked for hours and he helped me understand my ADHD. From that moment on we were firm friends.

My team were stunned when he showed the most incredible act of kindness and took our ‘giant suitcase of open source’, an outsize heavy suitcase filled with banners and swag in his car for us. But he took it from Raleigh to the Eastern Sea Board and then flew with it from Boston to Lake Tahoe. Kindness above and beyond the call of duty.

When I set up State of Open Con in 2022, it would not have happened without Erik who taught me how to do many things required of a conference organiser in open source and personally contributed financially to it. State of Open Con would not have happened without him and in future years we will miss him.

This is his obituary posted by his family. Our thoughts are with them

“Erik Riedel – 52, of Scituate, passed away on June 30, 2024, leaving behind his broken-hearted family: his wife Cheryl LG Riedel, his beloved children Emma, Jonah, Elena, and Ani, his parents Juergen and Gerda, and his brother Jens Riedel.

Erik’s list of accomplishments are lengthy, but more important than his education, or his career, or where he lived and when, is HOW he lived; the ineffable qualities that have connected all of us here now, in collecting our fondest memories and in sharing our sorrow. There are no words that can convey the shape and weight of the loss we are processing, but we are comforted in knowing that his compassion, his infectious laugh, and his willingness to jump in and help have impacted so many others. Just like us, we know that many of you will think of him when you look up and notice the clouds passing by; that you’ll smile remembering his infamous moves on any available dance floor; that you’ll miss his seemingly-endless patience while providing free tech support; that you’ll feel some of his joy at finding a really good empty box that’s the perfect size to recycle something… somewhere… at some point in time. We know you’ll perform small acts of kindness that often go unnoticed to honor his commitment to making this world a more tender and caring place. We know that you’ll look at his children and see the pride and ferocious love he breathed into them and wonder at the strength of the bonds he built with each of them, bonds that will sustain us all while we learn to navigate our lives without him. We know that when things look dark and scary, you’ll remember Erik’s favorite quote, Look for the Helpers ( We know you’ll reflect his eternal optimism, lend a hand, provide a soft shoulder, and step up to be the helper someone needs in his stead, to offer a glimpse of the hope he provided each of us, while he rests.

A visitation will be held on Tuesday, July 9, 2024 from 3:00-7:00 pm at Richardson-Gaffey Funeral Home, 382 First Parish Rd, Scituate, MA 02066.

A memorial service will be held on Wednesday, July 10, 2024 at 11:00 am at St. Luke’s Church, 465 First Parish Rd, Scituate, MA 02066 with an open house reception at the Riedel home to follow.

Contributions in Erik’s memory can be made to the Trevor Project at

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