Widener, Jr, Ralph W. "Doc" Ralph W. Widener, Jr (known to many as "Doc") who was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, on December 3, 1922, passed away on October 21, 2011, in Dallas, Texas. He earned a PHD and taught History and Public Speaking for forty years, most of it on the college and university level. He was a U.S. Army veteran of WWII. He received the Purple Heart for wounds received in action. He was a member of the Metropolitan Dallas American Legion Post No. 581, serving twice as its commander. He was a member of the Pentagon Masonic Lodge No. 1080 AF & AM since 1964. He authored five books including William Henry Gaston, a Builder of Dallas. At the age of 64 he became the oldest person to re-complete infantry basic training at Fort Benning. For his service, he received many awards, especially the Outstanding Citizen Service Medal and Certificate, and was later inducted into Fort Benning's Sergeant Audie Murphy Club, the only civilian so honored. After retiring from teaching he completed the Citizen's Police Academy Training course in 1998 and performed volunteer service at the North Central Police Station for many years. He organized and partly financed a trip by the Dallas Police Choir to perform at the 60th anniversary of D-Day at Normandy Beach in France. He admired all of the Police Officers with whom he came in contact, not only at the North Central Police Station, but all six sub-stations. "Doc" was preceded in death by his parents, Ralph W and Ruth S Widener. He is survived by his sister Mary McCommons and his four nephews - James, Bruce, Warren and Scott McCommons. A visitation will be held at Sparkman-Hillcrest on Northwest Highway on Tuesday, October 25, from 3pm to 6pm. A funeral service will take place Wednesday, October 26, at 10am, at the Chapel of the Cross, 4333 Cole Avenue, in Dallas. Burial will take place on October 27 at the Memorial Park Cemetery in Tulsa, Oklahoma. In lieu of flowers please send donations to The Assist the Officer Foundation at 1412 Griffin Street East, Dallas, TX 75215
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Published in Dallas Morning News from Oct. 24 to Oct. 25, 2011