John H. Ritz, 79, of Washta, died on August 4, 2008 at the Cherokee Regional Medical Center. It was John's request to be cremated, and there will be private family graveside services at the Sunset View Cemetery in Washta at a later date. The Boothby Funeral Home in Cherokee is in charge of the arrangements.
John was born east of Washta on a farm on Oct. 11, 1928 to John and Alma (McCleery) Ritz.
The family moved to a farm west of Washta where he grew up and attended Washta Consolidated School, graduating in 1946. He served in the U. S. Army Counter Intelligence Corps, Occupation Japan from March 1947 to May 1, 1949.
John enlisted in 1946, and was honorably discharged in June of 1949. He was married to Bev Woodall in 1951 and divorced in 1965. He worked for IPS from August of 1951 to Jan. 1, 1987 when he retired. He was a member of the American Legion Post #390. He enjoyed coin collecting, gardening and traveling.
He was preceded in death by his parents, a grandson Jeff Ritz and a sister Carol Baldwin.
He is survived by a son John W. Ritz and his wife Karen and a granddaughter Susan of Port Richie, Fla.; a daughter Sandi Bernstein and her husband Scott of Buffalo, Minn.; and grandsons Brandon and Phillip; his companion of 40 years, Anne Droegmiller, and special people in his life- the Woods family and Droegmiller family; a sister, Barbara Easter and her husband Marvin of Columbus, Ohio, and several nieces and nephews.