Ralph Vernon Packer|
Ralph Vernon Packer, 93, died on Nov. 19, 2012.
Ralph was born on a farm in Marshalltown, Iowa, on Dec. 14, 1918, to Kersey and
After completing high school and two years of college, he was trained as a tool and die maker. During World War II, he worked at Douglas Aircraft in both Los Angeles and Chicago, building various planes for the war. In 1959, he moved his family to Tempe and shortly thereafter established the Ralph Packer Insurance
Agency, where he dedicated himself to serving his community and establishing
He was active in many church and civic organizations
throughout his life, and devoted even more time to those causes after his
retirement. An avid volunteer, he delivered for Meals on Wheels until he was 92
years old! Ralph was an active member of the Kiwanis Club of Tempe for 51 years
and was also a Shriner for many years, including past Captain of the El Zaribah
Temple Guard. Ralph had been a member of the First Congregational Church of
Tempe since 1959 and served in a variety of leadership roles.
He was an avid
golfer and played into his 90s. In addition to international travel, Ralph
particularly enjoyed spending summers in Northern Arizona, first at the family
cabin at Stoneman Lake, and later in Kachina Village.
Ralph was emphatically a
family man, giving tender loving support to his children, grandchildren and
great-grandchildren, as well as many others to whom he was a father figure. He
was known for his integrity, honesty, dependability and his great sense of
Ralph is survived by his three daughters, Sharon Harkins (Dee) of
Chandler; Shirley Roberts of Medford, Ore.; and Jody Porter (Tim) of Las Vegas,
Nev.; his six grandchildren, Jennifer, Stephanie, Michael, Kristina, Douglas and
Gregory; four great-grandchildren; and many extended family members and
He was preceded in death by his first wife, Penny, who died
in 1949; and Adrienne, his wife of 50 years, who died in 2002. He was also
preceded in death by his sister Pauline, his brother Neil, and son Roger.
addition to his human family, he is survived by his faithful little dog, Annie.
A celebration of life will be held at the First Congregational Church of Tempe
at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 24. To honor Ralph's memory, donations in his name
may be made to the Shriners Hospital Transportation Fund, which assists children
and their families in getting to a Shriners Hospital for Children. Donations can
be sent to El Zaribah Shrine Temple, 552 N. 40th Street, Phoenix AZ 85008.
Arrangements entrusted to Tempe Mortuary.