BURGETTSTOWN, Penn. – Rainè Riggs, mother of three, doctor and the daughter-in-law of Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, died Saturday, three weeks after falling ill and two days after being diagnosed with neuroendocrine cancer.
Riggs, a neuropsychologist, served as director of behavioral medicine at Dartmouth Medical School for several years, and she started the Palliative Care Department for Dartmouth Medical Center. She owned Riggs Geriatric Psychology in Windsor, Vermont. She was married to Levi Sanders of Claremont and the two of them have three children: Sunnee Riggs Sanders, Ryleigh Riggs Sanders and Grayson Riggs Sanders.
Levi Sanders ran unsuccessfully for a New Hampshire congressional seat in 2018. The two met while working at an emergency food shelter in Vermont.
Riggs was born Dec. 23, 1972, to Richard Riggs and Rinda Yukevich Riggs. She graduated valedictorian of her class from Burgettstown High School in 1990 and earned her bachelor’s in psychology from American University. She went on to Harvard University and Brown University, gaining a master’s degree in geriatric neuropsychology and clinical sleep medicine. As a graduate student, Riggs was recognized by the National Institute of Health for her research study on the affects of chemotherapy on the brain. She earned her doctorate in neuropsychology at the University of Vermont.
According to her obituary, “Even with all of the achievements in education, Rainè always said her crowning achievement in life was the day she became a mother. Rainè truly lived every day with her children as though it may be the last.”
Those wishing to remember Dr. Riggs in a special way can make a memorial donation in her memory to the charity that meant the most to her, Love Without Boundaries, P.O. Box 1861, Lowell, AK 72745, www.lovewithoutboundaries.com.