Dr. Ernest A. Rider

April 20, 2022

Ernest Aubrey Rider, 89, died on Wednesday, April 20, 2022 at his home. He was born in Rivesville, West Virginia, one of six children, on July 18, 1932 at the height of the Great Depression. He was the son of PM Rider and Ethel Isolace Cole Rider. The son of two educators, Ernie realized that education was a key to his future. Ernie went to college at Fairmont State where athletics and extracurricular activities became central to his life. He played varsity football, basketball, and baseball, ran track and cross country, sang in the choir, and played the baritone horn in the band which became extremely important after he joined the army during the Korean War. He was shipped off to Germany to Band training school for two years.

Following his military service, Ernie enrolled in graduate school at West Virginia University with the idea of teaching at the college level but soon realized that dentists made more money than college professors.

Dr. Ernest Rider received his dental degree from West Virginia University, completed a residency in children’s dentistry at the Eastman Dental Center in Rochester, New York, and his orthodontic residency at Eastman Dental Center, University of Rochester and Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, New York. He practiced orthodontics in Charlotte for 58 years and had special training in facial development of the growing child. Dr. Rider was a recognized specialist in the treatment of craniofacial anomalies such as cleft lip, cleft palate, and the treatment of facial development problems in young children. He also specialized in the management of head, neck, face, and jaw pain. In addition, Dr. Rider treated hundreds of people with snoring and obstructive sleep apnea problems.

Dr. Rider presented scientific papers on cleft palate treatment, jaw pain management, treatment of snoring and obstructive sleep apnea, and treatment of face and jaw development problems at state, regional, and national meetings of pediatricians, otolaryngologists, plastic surgeons and orthodontists. He also wrote a textbook chapter on the diagnosis and treatment of sleep-disordered breathing.

Dr. Rider was honored by and a member of quite a few professional organizations including Diplomate, American Board of Orthodontics; Fellow, World Federation of Orthodontists; Fellow, College of the American Board of Orthodontics; Fellow, American College of Dentists; member, North Carolina Dental Society; Past President, North Carolina Association of Orthodontists; Past President, North Carolina Second District Dental Society; and Past President, Charlotte Dental Society. Dr. Rider was a member of the Dilworth Rotary Club.

Dr. Rider is survived by his wife, Nancy Hughes Rider and her children, John Geer and his wife, Tammy and their son, Jay; Susan Zanghi and her daughters, Jennifer and Kristen and son, Tony; Todd Geer and his wife Laura.

Dr. Rider is also survived by Ann Rider, his first wife and the mother of their children, Cynthia Rider; Stephanie Sterling and her husband, Doug, and her son, Bryson; and Amy Elkins and her daughter, Jasmine and granddaughter, Isabella. He was preceded in death by a son, Steve Rider.

Also surviving is Dr. Rider’s second wife, Gloria DeLone and her daughters, Natalie Garcia and her husband, Orlando, and Anjie Waters and her husband, Wes and their daughters, Caitlyn, Mary Holland and Mallie.

A memorial service will be held at 2:00 PM on Monday, April 25, 2022, at Myers Park Baptist Church.

Memorials may be sent to Novant Health Hospice, PO Box 33549, Charlotte, NC 28233-3549 or to Myers Park Baptist Church, 1900 Queens Road, Charlotte, NC 28207.

Arrangements are in the care of Kenneth W. Poe Funeral & Cremation Service, 1321 Berkeley Ave., Charlotte, NC; 28204 (704) 641-7606. Online condolences can be shared at www.kennethpoeservices.com.

Share your memories & condolences


  • (Kumar)Muthukumaran Azhagesan

    We are so sad to hear that Dr. Rider has left us. Dr. Rider was a great, very talented, caring Orthodontist, and a very kind human as well. We will miss him.

  • Judy and Charles Smith

    Nancy, love and prayers to you and your family.

    Judy and Charles

  • Pamela Bashor

    As a Speech-Language Pathologist, I worked Dr. Rider in Cleft Palate Clinics for many years. I admired his knowledge, skill, and compassion when treating his patients and it was a pleasure to work on the teams with him. He was also my daughter’s orthodontist when she was growing up. He will be missed.
    Pamela Bashor

  • Frank Titus

    RIP Ernie.

  • Leo Fitzsimons

    I’m very sorry to hear that Ernie has left us.
    He was a great gentle person who was always ready with a funny comment at our Cedarwood Golf club. I was always greeted with a happy smile; he will be sorely missed.

  • Jay Pallotta

    My sincerest sympathies & prayers for the Rider family

  • Catherine Nichols

    Dr. Rider was a wonderful person. He treated everyone he met with the utmost respect. I was fortunate to have been on 2 mission trips with him. He will be missed by all that had the honor of knowing him.

  • Ken and Kelly Jones

    Both of our kids Andrew and Taylor were patients of Dr Rider. From day one he treated us like family and made the whole process easy and fun. We loved his stories and the kids especially loved the movie days at Phillips Theater. He truly cared about people and showed it. We were one of the lucky people to have had Dr Rider in our lives.

  • Dr. Stephen Hannon

    I loved and admired Ernie. He was not only a fabulous orthodontist, but also the most caring guy you could ever hope to have as a friend. We will all miss his humor and warmth.

  • TBI Alumni Association

    On behalf of the Officers & Brothers of TBI Alumni Association and Tau Beta Iota Fraternity, I should like to extend our condolences at the passing of Brother Rider.

    Brother Ernie and all TBI’s who have left us during the past year will be remembered at the Memorial Service held during our annual Founders Day Dinner in March.

    Charles T. Hillberry, Jr.
    TBI Alumni Association