Raymond Francis Ruppert died Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2013, in Floresville, Texas, at the Texas State Veterans Home surrounded by loving family. He gracefully, without complaint, and with characteristic great humor, met the challenge of chronic illness. Born May 23, 1922 in Slayton, Minn., to Frank and Estella (Hartmann) Ruppert, he grew up in Jordan, and graduated Jordan High School in 1941. He was the oldest of three children. Ray attended St. Johns University and University of Minnesota. His studies were interrupted by WWII. He proudly served in the US Navy aboard the USS Sicard. Combining his military experience in radio electronics with educational focus in electrical engineering and business, Ray parlayed the multiple disciplines into a career in the emerging field of vending automation. He held positions in sales, marketing, design and management. In later years, he owned a coffee service business and was honored by the Automatic Merchandising Council of New Jersey (AMCNJ) as Man of the Year for his contributions in advancing vending legislation. Ray and Mary Jane Tieben married on May 8, 1948, at the Church of St. Mark in Shakopee, Minn. Blessed with three daughters, they shared their lives together in dance, travel, and raising their family. A self-taught piano player, Ray filled his home with the joy of music and song. A lifelong member of the Knights of Columbus, Ray was honored as Fourth Degree Knight in Princeton, N.J., in 1961. As a boy, he served Mass at St. John's Catholic Church in Jordan, continuing to serve when returning home from college breaks. An avid hunter and fisherman, he loved and embraced the woods and waters of Minnesota where he often returned, never missing a chance to also visit lifelong friends in Jordan. Deeply missed and remembered always by those who loved Ray are his wife of 64 years, Jane; daughters, Anne Marie R. (Kevin) Gover of Alexandria, Va., Mary Jo Kathryn Newell of San Antonio, Texas, Julia Alison (Joseph) McGuirl of Lexington; grandsons, Marc Beverly, Joalton Newell, and Justin McGuirl; great-grandchildren, Logan and Sierra Beverly; sisters, Marie (James) Bach of Milwaukee, Wis., Georgianna (John) Yung of Stillwater, Minn.; and many loving relatives and friends throughout the country. Ray is preceded in death by his mother, father, and granddaughter, Lauren Beverly. Visitation is Monday, Jan. 7, from 4 to 7 p.m., at Ballard-Sunder Funeral Home, 104 West First St., Jordan, and one hour prior to the Mass at church. The Mass of Christian Burial will be Tuesday, Jan. 8, at 11 a.m., at St. John the Baptist Church, 210 N Broadway, Jordan. Father Timothy Yanta will preside. Ray will be laid to rest with his parents and grandparents at St. John Calvary Cemetery in Jordan, with full military honors provided by the Jordan Vets Honor Guard. The Ruppert family is served with honor, care and compassion by Ballard-Sunder Funeral Home and Cremation Services, Jordan Chapel. The family wishes to deeply thank Ray's daughter, Mary Jo, and Ray's true friend, Danny Phillips, for their loving dedication to Ray's physical, spiritual, and intellectual care in the final months of his life, along with daughter, Anne Marie and her husband, Kevin, who arrived just in time to share his final days. We will always carry your loving memory, forever smile, and laughter in our hearts.
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Published by The Ashland Tab from Jan. 6 to Jan. 13, 2013.