Ralph Lee Lewis was born Dec. 29, 1935, in Bloomfield, Mo., to James Vernor Lewis and Velma Lee Alexander. When Ralph was nine years old, he went to live with his grandfather, Will Alexander, and he learned all about farming and horses, which he loved dearly, and they loved him, each one had a distinct personality and would do things for him they wouldn’t do for other people. When he was 16, he left home and went from state to state working at different companies.
During the early 1940s, all the Alexanders’ and Lewis’ moved to Flint, Mich., to work at General Motors. Ralph was one of those people who had many memories and made a lot of friends there and did they ever raise havoc, but that was Ralph.
Ralph went to work with Genesee Plumbing and was an honorary employee forever, the same one company that is now in every home Genova Plastics. He was a licensed plumber.
Ralph finally settled down, got married and was married to Freda Marie Chipps for 51 years. They had three children together. He loved the Raymondville area (gosh, did he ever), the ballgames and the school activities. He loved everyone’s kids, thought they were wonderful, especially the teenagers; they never did anything wrong. Rees’ Corner Express was one of his favorite hangouts.
Ralph was of Cherokee Indian, Black Irish German descent and proud of it. He said that was how he had horse sense.
He is survived by three children, Dan Lee and his wife, Maria, Vern Weldon and his wife, Lynn, and Sherry Louann and her husband, Bob; and six wonderful grandchildren, Nick Meizler, Chad Lewis and his wife, Lisa, Jared Lewis, Grant Lewis, Trudee Ellsworth and Sammi Ellsworth. He was very proud of his young sister-in-laws, Marilyn Hayes, Myra Ceplina and Carole Chipps. He is also survived by adopted grandchildren, brother-in-laws, Howard (Bub) Chipps, Billy Hayes and Joe Ceplina; nieces, nephews, many, many friends who he loved to talk with.
Services were 4 p.m. Wednesday, March 7, 2012, at the Fox Chapel with Pastor Jackie Cooper officiating.
Memorial contributions may be made to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital. Online condolences may be made at www.foxfh.net.