Byron William Ruffin, Sr.
April 22, 1923 ~ June 9, 2014
A true gentleman, Byron William Ruffin, Sr., passed away at his home on Monday, 9 June 2014. He was born April 22, 1923 in St. Louis, Missouri and had resided on the Coast since 1975.
He entered the U. S. Navy in 1942 and after four years in the Pacific during WWII, he continued his education at the University of Missouri studying Electrical Engineering.
Byron served through the end of WWII in the Pacific and from his destroyer escort ship he witnessed General MacArthur sign the Declaration of Peace with the representative of Japan alongside his surviving best friend of 70 years, Barry Bocchieri of New Jersey. Byron was a true patriot and loved this country.
He was a cartographer/mathematician with the federal government for 23 years. He mapped the moon with mathematics for the NASA space program.
Byron strived and succeeded in many areas from golf to ball room dancing with his loving wife, Helen. An avid golfer, when he retired at 55 years of age, he centered on enjoying the game of golf and the beauty of outdoors. He carried his love for the beauty of nature into his own yard and was a master of a pristine lawn.
Byron and Helen enjoyed gardening together, dancing, and international travel. He was a devoted husband and family man.
Mr. Ruffin was preceded in death by his mother Fleta McGinty and father Roy Smith Ruffin Sr., his sister, Forthelia Ruffin and his brother, Curtis Ruffin.
He is survived by his loving wife of 20 years, Helen Harrison Ruffin, his sons, Byron W. Ruffin, Jr of Biloxi and Randall R. (Jill) Ruffin of Alpharetta, GA; three grandchildren Jennifer (Justin) Reynolds, Blaire (Josh) Cohn, and Byron W. Ruffin, III; and five great grandchildren (Brice, Anna, Kyle, Christian and Kennedy) brother Roy Smith (Marge) Ruffin, and sister-in-law Florence Ruffin.
His extended family includes children, Lee (Donna) Bryan of Vicksburg, Bill (Anne) Bryan of Shreveport and Lisa Bryan of Sacramento, along with his brothers and sisters-in-law Curtis and Donna Harrison, Angelo and Joy Goundas, Kathleen Harrison and their children and grandchildren. He was a well-loved grandfather to Elizabeth, Sarah, Betsy, Matthew, and Stephen Bryan.
Byron will be greatly missed by many for all he has done for his country, friends and his family.
The funeral procession will leave RIEMANN FAMILY FUNERAL HOME, 274 Beauvoir Road in Biloxi on Tuesday June 17, 2014, at 9:45 a.m. for a graveside service at 10:00 a.m. at Biloxi National Cemetery.
Tributes may be offered at www.riemannfamily.com.
Riemann Family Funeral Home
274 Beauvoir Road Biloxi, MS 39531
Published in The Sun Herald on June 15, 2014