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Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014
Ralph Edward Rhoades, 86, Rockford, passed away at 2:15 p.m. Aug. 27, 2014, at Colonial Nursing Home, Rockford.
He was born Sept. 27, 1927, in Mendon, to Penn and Fannie Fox Rhoades. On May 17, 1946, he married Dorothy E. Robbins, who died Aug. 9, 2014.
Surviving are a daughter, Barb (Scott) Bowen, Rockford; six grandchildren, Brenda (Matt) Schneider, Botkins, Debbie (Fred) Slade, Greenville, Lucas (Katie) Bowen, Cuyahoga Falls, Brandon (Kelsey) Bowen, Rockford, Jamie (Kyle) Burger, Lima, and Jake Jackson, Columbus; 12 great-grandchildren; and a great-great-grandchild.
Deceased are two daughters, Debbie Fisher and Julie Eicher; and three sisters, Doris Purdy, Madge Brandt and Mary Rhoades.
He achieved the rank of staff sergeant for the U.S. Air Force during the Korean Conflict, and served four active years and four inactive years. He then went on to own Auto Specialty, an auto body shop in Rockford.
He was proud to serve the community of Rockford. He was a firefighter for over 63 years, and served as fire chief for 38 of those years. He was one of the founders and served as a member of the rescue squad as an EMT. He also was a member of American Legion Post #508.
Services are 11 a.m. Friday at New Horizons Community Church, Rockford, Pastor Dave Souers officiating. Burial will follow at Mercer Memory Gardens, Celina.
Calling is 2-8 p.m. Thursday and 10-11 a.m. Friday at the church.
Memorials may be directed to the Rockford Fire Department and State of the Heart Hospice.
Condolences may be expressed at www.ketchamripley.com.
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