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Ralph E. Congdon
March 12, 1941 ~ October 2, 2023 (age 82) 82 Years Old
Ralph E. Congdon, 82, of Little Falls, passed away with his loving family by his side on Monday, October 2, 2023, at the St. Elizabeth Medical Center in Utica.
Ralph was born at home on the family farm in the town of Danube on March 12, 1941, during a blizzard, a son of the late James A., Sr. and Mildred (Cramer) Congdon. On October 30, 1982, he married Diana Hallenbeck in Herkimer, NY and celebrated 40 years of marriage.
He was a 1958 graduate of St. Johnsville Central School. In July 1959, Ralph enlisted in the United States Marine Corps, serving 4 years active duty and was stationed in Okinawa, Japan for 15 months. He re-enlisted in 1963, transferring into the USMC Reserves, and received an honorable discharge in 1965. He was very proud of his military service and was a life member of the Marine Corps League. Following his discharge, Ralph returned home to Little Falls and began working as a Tool and Die Maker at Chicago Pneumatic in Frankfort for over 30 years, retiring when the company closed up shop and moved south. He then worked part time as a service station technician on the NYS Thruway for several years until health concerns forced his retirement.
In his spare time, Ralph was an ardent NASCAR fan, especially of driver Jeff Gordon, and of car racing in general. He loved going to the Fonda Speedway to watch the dirt track races, an activity he cherished sharing with his children. Ralph loved to go camping with his family to Nick’s Lake Campground in Old Forge, never missing a trip in 34 years. He also enjoyed going to visit his nephew, Gary Talbot, whom he was very close to, and his brother Lloyd on the old farm. Ralph will be lovingly remembered for being a devoted husband and father, and “Bompa” to his two grandchildren whom he absolutely cherished.
Ralph is survived by his wife of 40 years, Diana “Kerri” Congdon of Little Falls; his children, Michael (Jenny) Congdon of Franklin, Daniel (Stefanie Conn) Congdon of Little Falls and Katie (Alan) Stokes of Little Falls; and his grandchildren, Mason Stokes and Lillyann Congdon.
He is also survived by his brother, Robert Congdon; his sisters-in-law, Jessie Debus and Barbara Congdon, and many, many nieces, nephews, great nieces and nephews, cousins and friends.
Ralph was predeceased by his brothers, James (Florence), Lloyd, Larry, Orlyn “Stub” (Joyce), Aretus and Roger; his sisters, Annamargaret Congdon, Annabelle (John) Talbot and Greta (Harold) Weaver and his sister-in-law, Irene Congdon.
In keeping with Ralph’s wishes, he will be cremated. Family and friends are invited to call on Saturday, October 7, 2023, from 10am-Noon at the Vincent A. Enea Funeral Service, (next to Hannaford Markets), 527 East Albany Street, Herkimer, NY 315-866-1500. A memorial service with full military honors accorded will be held immediately following the calling hours at Noon at the funeral home.
In lieu of flowers, the family kindly requests that you consider making a donation in Ralph’s memory to the Marine Corps League, 178 Second Street, Ilion, NY 13357 or to the American Diabetes Association, P.O. Box 7023, Merrifield, VA 22116-7023.
The family would like to extend a special thank you to the staff of Floor 3C and the ICU of St. Elizabeth’s for their wonderful and compassionate care Ralph received while he was there and also to Vincent Enea and Mike Beran of the Vincent Enea Funeral Service for their caring and friendship during this difficult time.