Gary Mack Ralph was born Saturday, February 18, 1950, in Blytheville, Arkansas to Martha Juanita (Biggs) and Mackie Ralph. He passed away peacefully in his home on Thursday, October 5th, 2023, surrounded by his wife and three daughters.
Gary attended Holland Elementary and South Pemiscot High School. He was very active in baseball, basketball, and track. Gary excelled in both sports and academics. Gary joined the Army in August 1968. He did his basic training in Fort Campbell, Kentucky, and his AIT training in Fort Sill, Oklahoma. Gary was deployed to Ulm, Germany where he was a Survey Specialist for the installation of Pershing Missiles at Wiley Kaserne. He was honorably discharged from the Army as an E-5 in August 1971. Gary married his middle school sweetheart, Sharron Kaye Hicks, on December 20, 1968, to this union 3 daughters were born. Kimberly Anne, Sherri Lynn, and Christi Michelle. After becoming members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Gary and Sharron were sealed for all eternity at the Swiss Temple in Zurich, Switzerland in February of 1971. This December they celebrate 55 years of marriage. Gary was the foundation for his family. Sharron and daughters were his pride and joy! Gary instilled in his daughters a love of the outdoors, sports, learning, and adventures. He impressed upon them the value of hard work, never giving up or backing down from challenge, but most of all an undeniable love for God, family, community, and country. Gary was extremely proud of his girls and he felt blessed to have gained three amazing son-in laws. He was proud of the grandchildren and great-grandchildren that were born from these unions. Gary was a very active sportsman and loved playing basketball and softball. He enjoyed the great outdoors hunting and spending time camping and canoeing on the area’s rivers. He also had a love of building and flying RC aircraft. Gary was a gifted builder and carpenter. Some of the best family memories were made during the many home and project builds that drew everyone in the family together to pitch in and help. Gary was an active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for over 53 years. He has served in many roles for his church: Branch President, High Councilman, Boy Scout Master, Seminary Teacher, Executive Secretary, Young-men’s President and many more. Gary was very active in the Boy Scouts of America. He was the District Boy Scout Commissioner and set up many of the troops around the Ozarks. He was a mentor and leader to many of the young men that had the pleasure of getting to learn from him. Gary received many awards and accolades for his service to the Boy Scout Organization. Gary’s work history has involved: Surveying, construction and concrete work, general contractor for building Wal-Mart stores, and oil treatment plant operator. For the past 30+ years he worked as an American Petroleum Inspector in the Oil Industry. This work took him and Sharron on many adventures around the United States. They enjoyed their time traveling in their RV getting to see God’s beautiful country. Gary is preceded in death by his parents: Mackie and Martha Juanita Ralph, brothers Bruce Wayne and Randy Lee Ralph, and nephew David Michael Ralph.
He is survived by his wife Sharron of the home. His brother Glynn Allen Ralph of Licking, MO. His daughters, Kimberly and husband, Dale Smotherman of Mountain View, MO; Sherri and husband, Pete Berry of Mountain View, MO; Christi and husband, Chris Hancock of Linn Creek, MO. His grandchildren: Maverick (Julie) Goforth, Logan Berry, Marissa (Jansen) Acklin, Madison (Andrew) Berry, and Caiden Hancock. His great grandchildren: Mira Goforth and Auden Acklin.
A Celebration of Life to honor Gary will be held on Saturday, November 18th, 2023, at 2:00 pm at the Mountain View Community Center located at 125 E 1st St, Mountain View, MO 65548. Gary’s ashes will be laid to rest with full military honors at Union Chapel Cemetery in Eunice, MO during a family only intimate ceremony. Arrangements are under the direction of Willow Funeral Home, LLC.