Ralph James Sommerer, 90, of Jefferson City, passed away on Wednesday, December 15, 2020 at Landmark Hospital in Columbia, surrounded by his loving family. He was born on October 15, 1930 in Jefferson City; a son of the late Herman and Edith (Raithel) Sommerer. He was united in marriage to Theresa (Lolly) Sommerer on August 10, 1958 at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Honey Creek.
Ralph was a graduate of Eugene High School. He attended the University of Missouri – Columbia, School of Agriculture, graduating in 1958. After teaching vocational agriculture for six years, he began working for MFA as a fieldman. He worked for the Missouri State Highway Department, District 5 for over 24 years, retiring as an appraiser.
Ralph served as a baseball commissioner for 25 years for the Brazito Honey Creek Lions Club. He was a school board member at Eugene High School and Immanuel Lutheran School in Honey Creek. Ralph was a 4-H livestock leader and served on many boards at Immanuel Lutheran Church. He was primary owner of the H/R Cattle Company.
Ralph was proud of the fact that he had the first chain saw in Cole County. He loved to hear his family play and sing bluegrass and country music and was a huge supporter of the Makers Dozen, a bluegrass gospel group, at Immanuel Lutheran. Ralph was an avid Cardinals baseball fan who enjoyed talking about former baseball players that he coached. Most of all, he enjoyed spending as much time as he could with his grandchildren.
He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Theresa; children: Danny Sommerer (Denise), David Sommerer (Joni), Douglas Sommerer (Melissa), Samuel Sommerer (Rachel) and Rev. Steve Sommerer (Melanie); grandchildren: Joshua Sommerer (Tiffany), Katie Ringwald (Anthony), Vincent Sommerer (Haley), Whitni Upton (Josh), Chance Sommerer (Emily), Lance Sommerer (Layken), Hance Sommerer, Joseph Sommerer, John Sommerer, Leah Sommerer, Anna Sommerer, Gracen Sommerer, Daniel Sommerer, Ezra Sommerer, Micah Sommerer; great-grandchildren: Theodore Ringwald, Abigail Ringwald, Ethan Sommerer and Truett Sommerer; sister: Doris Propst and many nieces, nephews, great nieces, great nephews, family and friends.
After the death of Ralph’s parents when he was 14, he was raised by Uncle Edward and Aunt Edna Sommerer, who also preceded him in death. Ralph was also preceded in death by his son: Shawn Matthew Sommerer; his sisters: Frances Frasher and Norma Sommerer; brother: Walter Sommerer; cousins: John Sommerer and Robert Sommerer.
Friends will be received from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. on Monday, December 21, 2020 at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Honey Creek. Funeral services will follow at 11:00 a.m. with Rev. Tony Fields officiating. Interment will be held at Immanuel Lutheran Cemetery in Honey Creek.
In lieu of flowers, expressions of sympathy may be made to the Immanuel Lutheran Church Gym Restoration Fund or Calvary Lutheran High School.
Danny wanted me to pass on this information about the funeral Monday:
- There will not be a big lunch after the funeral. Just a small lunch for Aunt Lolly, her sons and their families.
- If you would prefer, you can attend the funeral service in your car by parking in the church parking lot and tuning your radio to 104.1 FM. The broadcast will start about 15 minutes before the funeral. You are welcome to come in and pay your respects before the service if you wish.
- Because of social distancing requirements, there will be somewhat limited seating in the church, so some of us might have to attend the funeral via the drive in option. I’m not really sure how much seating there will be. Maybe someone more in the know can reply.
- The visitation before the funeral service will be normal.