Ralph Mesick

January 13, 1923 ~ October 2, 2013

Ralph Lyle Mesick died October 2, 2013 after a full and active life. He was born in LaHarpe, Illinois to Lester and Allea and moved to Hoquiam, Washington at the age of five. From there, his family moved to Montesano and then to Elma, Washington where he graduated from high school. He served in the Navy during WWII and Korea. Ralph moved to Vancouver, Washington, graduated from Clark College, married Helen King, and started a family by the early 1950s. He later joined the Air Force Reserves and switched to the Air National Guard becoming the Command Chief Master Sergeant at the Portland Air National Guard Base. He retired in 1983 and immediately joined the Oregon State Defense Force where he served until his death, earning the rank of Colonel. Ralph was an electrician at Bonneville Power Administration retiring in 1988 after 33 years. He was active in many organizations: Destroyer Escort Sailors Association; vice-president of Air Force Sergeants Association Chapter 1451; president of State Guard Association of the United States; and staff member of the Lewis and Clark Young Marines. Ralph was a lifelong collector of old cars. Rarely did he make an appearance without his western hat and western boots, many pairs of which he could boast. Guaranteed, all had that military spit shine.
Ralph was a devoted husband and father and will be greatly missed by Sue, his wife of 22 years; his daughters, Taiwa Ulrich (Mykel) and Cathy Bloss; his sons, Ed (Diane), Bob (Amy) and Billy; step-son, Buddy Byrd; his grandchildren and great-grandchildren; and close friends. Ralph was preceded in death by his parents; and his sister, Jean.
Military honors will be held at Willamette National Cemetery on Tuesday, October 15 at 1:30 pm. A Celebration of Life will follow at the Armed Forces Reserve Center (AFRC) at 3:00 p.m. at Camp Withycombe, 13500 Industrial Way, Clackamas, Oregon 97015. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to Sacred Flight (www.SacredFlight.org)
Please sign his Guest Book at www.columbian.com/obits.

Published in The Columbian on Oct. 9, 2013