Ralph Peter Kelsch, 93, of Idaho Falls, died Monday, April 29, 2013, at his home in Idaho Falls.
He was born July 21, 1919, in Idaho Falls to Peter N. and Bertha Poitner Kelsch. He attended Holy Rosary Grade School through the eighth grade and then went to work on the family farm.
He married Beulah M. Slighton on March 5, 1946, at Holy Rosary.
He retired at the age of 80. His first love was farming, where he raised potatoes, wheat, hay and Hereford cattle. His second love was carpentry. He built all the buildings on the farm and at the age of 45 built a family cabin in the Island Park area. He was a third-degree member of the Knights of Columbus and was very active in the Farm Bureau all his farming years.
He was a director for the Idaho Cattleman's Association. He enjoyed fishing and snowmobiling at the cabin in the Island Park area. In his youth, he was on the local Black Hawks hockey team in Idaho Falls.
He was very hardworking, honest and a devout Catholic who took people at their word. He taught his children to work hard and put his whole heart and soul into whatever he did.
Survivors include his wife, Beulah Kelsch of Idaho Falls; three sons, Mike (Lupe) Kelsch and Alan (Cathy) Kelsch, both of Idaho Falls, and Brad (Marlene) Kelsch of Libby, Mont.; one daughter, Dianne Vickers of Boise; three brothers, Vern (Ruth) Kelsch and Raymond Kelsch, both of Idaho Falls, and James Kelsch of Boise; two sisters, Betty (Pete) Lumia of Tucson, Ariz., and Joyce (William) Rausch of Easton, Md.; 10 grandchildren; and 11 great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Pete and Bertha Poitner Kelsch; brothers, Leonard and Kenneth; and sisters, Phyllis, Florence, Margaret and Mary Carol.
A funeral Mass will be celebrated at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 4, at Christ The King Catholic Church, on the corner of 17th Street and Woodruff Avenue in Idaho Falls, with Father Raul Covarrubias, celebrant. Burial will follow in Rose Hill Cemetery in Idaho Falls. A rosary will be recited from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday with a visitation following from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Buck-Miller-Hann Funeral Home, 825 E. 17th St. in Idaho Falls.
Online condolences for the family may be left at www.buckmillerhann.com.