Ralph Gerhardt, 80, of Texas City, passed away peacefully at his residence on Wednesday, November 13, 2019.
Ralph was born in Gary, Indiana on May 11, 1939, to Verus and Margaret Gerhardt. His parents moved the family to Texas City in the 1940's.
Ralph was a rolling stone in his early years, he left school at the age of 17 and joined the U.S. Navy. He served on a destroyer and had many stories of his adventures from San Diego to South East Asia. Ralph was always very proud of his 6 years in the Navy. He served on the U.S.S. Henderson, DD-785, as a radarman and kept in touch with old shipmates all his life.
Ralph returned to Texas City after a stint in the Navy where he met and married Jackie Carper, his life-long love for the next 57 years. They raised three sons and Ralph took up construction as his trade. He was known locally as a dependable roofer. In his 50's he enjoyed his job as a security guard at Lake Wood Yacht Club and had many friends there.
Ralph had many interests. He could fix about anything and was known as the go-to-guy for family history. He located relatives all over the country and collected many family photos over 100 years old. His research from 20 years ago can still be found on the internet. He had a favorite slot machine in Louisiana and played his lotto numbers daily. Ralph was a talented writer and story teller. One of his military poems was published in a favorite navy magazine. Ralph was known as quite a character to friends and family, humorous and always ready to entertain. He'd surprise folks with his dance moves well into his 50's. Even in tough times he was a generous, kind, and thoughtful man and passed those traits to his sons.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Verus and Margaret Gerhardt, sisters Shirley and Rosemary, and brothers Raymond, John, and Joe.
Ralph is survived by his wife Jackie Gerhardt; brother Jerry Gerhardt and wife Debby DeFee Gerhardt of Waco, TX; Ralph's sons and their spouses; Richard and Debbie, Kelly and Dana, and Ryan and Marci; grandchildren Christopher, Joshua, Brittany, Lacey, Ethan, Ryan Jr. and 4 great grandchildren.
His family thanks everyone for their love, support, and the celebration of his long life.
Visitation will be held on Tuesday, November 19, 2019 at 12:00 p.m. with a Memorial Service at 1:00 p.m. Pastor John Humphries will preside over the service at Emken-Linton Funeral Home in Texas City.
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