Ronald Acker Ronald Acker passed away on March 7, 2011. He was born in Rushville, Illinois on April 7, 1934. He was raised by his older sister and brother-in-law, Doris and Alex Yuskis after his own parents had passed. He grew up on a farm along the banks of the Mississippi River. He attended elementary school in a one room school house. He joined the United State Army and served in the Corps of Engineers in Korea. Three months before he left for Korea, he met the love of his life Joan Kindelspire Acker and they married on July 3, 1954. When he returned stateside, he became a printing apprentice at the Hamilton Press. Seeking opportunity and a more hospitable climate, Ron and Joan moved to Phoenix in 1963. In Phoenix, he gained employment as a pressman and then moved into sales for Loftin's Business Forms in 1968. After meeting with some success he decided go out on his own and after a few years with a couple of different partners, he started Orion Press in 1974, which is currently being run by his daughters. He retired in 1989 after a second heart bypass surgery. In 1994 he became the 400th heart transplant patient at the UMC of Tucson. He was an avid collector, and restored many cars especially Camaros and Corvettes. Later he became interested in antique tractors and was a member of A.E.D.G.E. & TA. (An antique tractor club) and participated in parades and tractor pulls. One of his many tractors was in this year's Fiesta Bowl parade driven by his grandson Travis Nelson. Ron was a generous man who touched the lives of many. He was a complete stranger to subtlety and nuance. You always knew exactly what he thought, what he wanted to accomplish, and how he was going to make it happen. He will be dearly missed by his wife of 56 years, Joan Acker, his eldest daughter Cressa Nelson, her husband Brian, grandson Aron Nelson (Susie) and great- granddaughter Chloe, grandson Travis Nelson (Kimberly), his younger daughter, Lisa McNurlin, her husband Randy, granddaughter Amanda Allen and grandson Troy Allen and step granddaughter Sarah McNurlin. He was preceded in death by his son Douglas Acker and Doug's wife Gail. He was also preceded in death by 4 brothers and 1 sister. He is survived by his sisters Doris Yuskis, Marjorie Kazukauskas and Glenna Scheffler and a brother Lyle Acker. A celebration of Ron's life will be held on Saturday, March 12, 2011 at 3:00PM at Heritage Funeral Chapel, 6830 W. Thunderbird Road, Peoria.
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Published in The Arizona Republic on Mar. 10, 2011