Ralph M. Schnepf, 91, a lifelong Plymouth County farmer, of Le Mars, died Saturday Nov. 6, 2004, in Le Mars, following a brief illness.
Ralph Magnus Schnepf was born Dec. 24, 1912, on the family farm in Fredonia Township just northeast of Oyens, the son of William and Helen (Majeres) Schnepf. He grew up near Oyens and attended St. Catherine's Parochial School. During World War II, Ralph served in the U.S. Army Air Corp. He married Lois Orban on Aug. 18, 1952 at St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Le Mars. Lois died May 2, 1956. On Sept. 13, 1958, Ralph married Loretta Dreckman at St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Le Mars.
Ralph was a lifelong farmer and cattle feeder in Fredonia Township. Ralph and Loretta moved into Le Mars in June of 1978, but Ralph continued to help with the farming and livestock with his sons until very recently.
Ralph was a member of St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Le Mars, a life member of the Knights of Columbus, Trinity Council #1466 in Le Mars, and a member of the Oyens Columbus Club. He was also a member of the American Legion, Wasmer Post #241 and the World War II Last Mans Club, and the V.F.W. Joseph Dickman Post #3325 in Remsen.
Ralph enjoyed farming, traveling, and gambling. He also enjoyed playing cards with his friends.
Survivors include his wife Loretta Schnepf of Le Mars; five children: Loren Schnepf and his wife, Sandy, of Le Mars, Helen Weber and her husband, Larry, of Merrill, Bill Schnepf and his wife, Shannon, of Omaha, Neb., Charlotte Schnepf and her partner, Beth Johnson, of Santa Fe, N.M., and Richard Schnepf and his wife, Sharon, of Granville; 10 grandchildren: Stephanie Loutsch and her husband, Jason of Remsen, Cheri Schnepf of Des Moines, Matt Schnepf and his wife, Angie of Le Mars, and Lori Schnepf of Le Mars, Nick and Eric Weber of Merrill, Rachel Schnepf of Omaha, Neb., and Sterling, Paris, and Krayton Schnepf of Granville; a great-grandson Carson Loutsch; three sisters: Marian Fitzpatrick of Le Mars, Delores Flaherty and her husband Bill of Houston, Texas, and Jane Even and her husband, Mike, of Alton; and two sisters-in-law: Esther Schnepf of Cold, Minn., and Teresa Schnepf of Le Mars.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his first wife, Lois; an infant daughter; two brothers, Elmer and Magnus Schnepf; and two sisters, Harriet Ludwig and Helen Pick.
The Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday at St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Le Mars with the Rev. William McCarthy presiding. Burial will be in St. Catherine's Catholic Cemetery in Oyens. Military Honors will be conducted at the cemetery by the American Legion, Wasmer Post #241 and the V.F.W., Joseph Dickman Post #3325.
Visitation will be anytime after 2 p.m. today (Monday) at St. Joseph's Church in Le Mars. There will be a rosary at 4 p.m., a Scriptural wake service at 7 p.m., and a Knights of Columbus rosary at 8 p.m. Monday at the church. Visitation will resume Tuesday morning for one hour prior to the service at the church.
The Feuerstein Funeral Home of Le Mars is in charge of arrangements.
Pallbearers will be Nick Weber, Matt Schnepf, Mick Even, Tom Pick, Mike Schnepf, and Gary Dreckman.