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John Ralph Slentz

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John Ralph Slentz Obituary
Slentz, John Ralph
Age 70, passed peacefully in his home in Scottsdale, AZ on the night of July 29, 2013. John was born on the family farm in Marshfield, MO on March 7th, 1943. He was the third child of Alvin Ellsworth Slentz and Eula Jane Brixey. One of five children he grew up in Springfield, MO where he, his brothers and sister worked the family service station on Highway 60. He graduated Parkview High School in 1961. He married Susan Joy Deering in 1964. They met while living in Oklahoma City. John and Susan moved to Anaheim, CA in 1967 where he served in the Army Reserve and attended college. He graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Business Administration from Cal State Fullerton in 1969. That year he was recruited by Empire Southwest in Phoenix, AZ and immediately went to work in their Caterpillar division. He worked for Empire for 31 years until his retirement. His oldest son, Michael John, was born in 1970. His second son, Sean Jeremy was born in 1974. John served as president of the Dons Club of Arizona. He was a member of the Tempe Baseliner Rotary Club, later becoming president of the Phoenix Arcadia Rotary Club, Assistant District Governor of Rotary District 5510 and an honorary member of the La Jolla Golden Triangle Rotary Club. John was also a founding member of Boy Scout Troop 451 in Mesa, AZ, where he was Assistant Scoutmaster and Venture Coach. He enjoyed working on cars and rebuilding homes. John was always game for a good happy hour. He loved four-wheeling with friends and driving his Corvette faster than he should have. John spent weeks at time in his RV exploring Rocky Point, California, Oregon, Texas and the many highways of Arizona. John "Baba" was a devoted grandfather to Isabelle, Zoe and Zane. He always made his grandchildren a priority, being there for birthdays and spending weeks at a time in San Diego. John was always planning his next big adventure and encouraged those around him to do the same. He met Sandy Heideman in 2010. They were married in 2011. She cared for him dutifully with grace, kindness and love. John is survived by his wife Sandy Slentz; Michael, Michelle and Isabelle Slentz of Encinitas, CA; Sean, Michelle, Zoe and Zane Slentz of Honolulu,HI; his brother William Slentz of Moody, TX; his brother Jack Slentz of Oklahoma City, OK; his sister Judith Slentz of Chandler, AZ; his brother Raymond Slentz of Nixa, MO and many nieces and nephews whom he adored. Services will be held at: Christ Church Lutheran, 3901 E. Indian School Rd. Phoenix, AZ, 85018 with happy hour to follow. Donations may be made to ( or Rotary International (

Published in The Arizona Republic on Aug. 2, 2013
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