Ralph Jacob Miles Jr.
April 6, 1945 - Oct. 3, 2020
Ralph Jacob Miles Jr., 75, born April 6, 1945. He died of cancer Oct. 3, 2020. He leaves behind a daughter and three sons.
Becky Lou (Michel) Miles, 66, born Jan. 24, 1954. She died of pneumonia May 22, 2020. She leaves behind two sons.
Ralph was born April 6, 1945, in Savannah, Ga., to Ralph J. Miles Sr. and Mary Eleanor (Hobbs) Miles. His father was serving in Europe in World War II when he was born and they didn't meet until he was more than a year old.
Ralph's father was an FBI agent after the war and the family moved several times during his youth, including to McAllen, Texas, and Alexandria, Va. In 1960, shortly before Ralph's freshman year in high school, they moved to Portland, Ore.
In 1964, Ralph graduated from David Douglas High School, where he played on the football team and sang tenor in the Vagabonds, an invitation-only singing group at the school. On Aug. 6, 1964, he married Janet Ellen Cooley, his high school sweetheart, and together they had three children, Wendy Eleanor (1965), Laura Kathleen (1968), and William Ralph (1972). They divorced in early 1974.
Ralph married Becky Lou Michel July 4, 1976, and they had enjoyed almost 37 wonderful years together until her death May 22, 2020.
Becky was born in Portland to Fred Michel and Dorothy (Bolliger) Michel Jan. 24. 1954. She graduated from Grant High school in 1972. Becky and Ralph had two wonderful sons, Jacob Michel, born April 4, 1979 and Jonathan Daniel born Sept. 23, 1982. Ralph and Becky were active in there United Methodist church and lived a Christian life of service, compassion and open hearts.
Ralph resided in the David Douglas and Parkrose areas of Portland, and later he and Becky lived in Metzger, Tigard and King City. Ralph was living in Southeast Portland with his son Jacob at the time of his death. He had a way of making everyday activities like painting the porch feel special, and his sons remember exploring the Metzger property where they grew up and climbing the apple trees that provided fruit for applesauce and apple pies.
Ralph had an innate ability to fix almost anything. He was a warm and loving man with a wry, quirky sense of humor and was always willing to lend a helping hand to those in need. He loved the outdoors camping, fishing, and hunting. Ralph and Becky enjoyed singing together in Portland's Swiss choir and attending Swiss festivals in celebration of Becky's heritage. In his later years he and Becky and spent many happy times with their children at their cabin on Mt. Hood.
Ralph worked as a lineman for Northwest Bell Telephone Co. in Minneapolis, Minn., until August 1965. Returning to Portland, he went to work for West Coast Telephone, which later became General Telephone and Electric and eventually Sprint, starting as a warehouse clerk and very soon moved into a central office, installing and maintaining equipment. He was employed by the company for 30-plus years and was once honored as a national Employee of the Year. After his retirement there, he continued to work in the telecommunications industry.
Ralph adored his children and was devastated when his older daughter, Wendy, died in 1994. He is survived by one daughter, Laura; and three sons, Bill (Staci), Jake, and Jon (Jade); three grandchildren, Brittany (Michael Lim), Alexis, and Kai Miles; and three great-grandsons, Michael Lim Jr., Isaac Lim, and Jameson Lim. He also is survived by his sister, Sharron (Sheri) Ann Miles Adams; and brother, David Wayne Miles (Nancy), of Alabama; several nieces and nephews. Becky is survived by her two sons, Jake, and Jon (Jade); and three brothers, Larry, Bill and Tom Michel.
Please sign the online guest book at www.oregonlive.com/obits