Victim of fall was pro bowler

March 07, 1997


Staff Writer

Ronald L. "Beaner" Jones Jr. loved to bowl, and on Wednesday night, he rolled a pretty good game of duckpins.

When he wasn't at one of three local bowling alleys, the City Light apprentice lineman and professional bowler often could be found attending night classes to earn credits to become a lineman.

Jones, 34, of 120 Summer St., died Thursday morning after he fell about 40 feet from a bucket truck while working to remove a transformer from a pole at the Hagerstown Fairgrounds, officials said.

"He was a good employee, a good worker, a good man and a good friend," said City Light Manager Terry Weaver.


Jones, a 1980 graduate of South Hagerstown High School, began working for City Light in 1994 after working for five years as a laborer at the city's water department.

His fiancee, Kim Ridenour, who works for the city's Water Pollution Control Department, was employed in the city's water department at the same time Jones was.

It was not on the job, but at the Tortuga on Dual Highway, that they met, she said.

"We danced together for about a year, a year and a half before we even dated," said Ridenour, 31, of Hagerstown.

The couple had been engaged for seven years and had built a house in Hagerstown.

On Thursday, several family members gathered to remember Jones, known to family and friends as Beaner.

He earned the nickname for his love of baked beans, but it also would have been appropriate for his love of beaning the pins in duckpin bowling up and down the East Coast - either as an amateur or on the Pro Tour.

On Thursday, Turner's Dual Lanes canceled its Commercial A duckpin league in memory of Jones, who played on the AMVETS team, said employee Fran Snyder.

At the bowling alley Thursday night, fellow bowlers in the league mourned his loss.

Eugene "Geno" Marshall said Jones carried one of the best duckpin averages in the league and traveled to Richmond, Va., Rhode Island, Massachusetts and elsewhere for professional tournaments.

"He was one of the best bowlers in Hagerstown," he said.

"He was a good competitive bowler. Sometimes, I think he'd rather bowl than eat," said Bruce "Shorty" Seilhamer, manager of Southside Bowl on Virginia Avenue, where Jones had bowled Wednesday night.

Jones' love of sports was not limited to bowling. He played golf, flag football, basketball and softball, family members said.

He was an outfielder for the J&L Floors softball team, said his brother, Randy "Goob" Jones.

Staff Writer Brendan Kirby contributed to this story.

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