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Ralph Elmo Arave, 79, of Jameston, passed away at Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center in Idaho Falls on March 23, 2012.
He was born Jan. 5, 1933 in Jameston to Lyman Alma and Mary Louise Arave.
He spent his childhood in Jameston. In 1945, when Ralph was in seventh grade the family moved to Salmon where they raised cattle. In his childhood, the cowboy way of life was instilled into his being. Ralph graduated from Salmon High School in 1950 and in 1953; he traded his cowboy gear to fit the form of a soldier in the Army. His training was in San Luis Obispo, Calif. From there he was shipped to Salzburg, Austria, where he served in signal communication. Ralph received a welcome home on Christmas Eve of 1954. He was home just a week when he moved to Provo, Utah, to attend BYU, majoring in animal husbandry.
In 1956, Ralph returned to help his family move from Salmon to British Columbia, Canada to a ranch on 3,400 acres. He really enjoyed working the rodeo string in Canada.In 1959, Ralph returned to San Luis Obispo, Calif., to attend horseshoeing school at Cal Poly Technical College. His skills took him to Arizona, Oregon, Canada, New Mexico, and then to Texas, all the while, riding the rodeo circuit.
It was in Texas that he met and married Mary Patricia Burk in November of 1961. They enjoyed the cowboy way of life, traveling the rodeo circuit, trained and raced horses, and raised their five children.
In 1992, after the passing of Patty, Ralph moved his family back to Jameston. He went right to work shoeing horses from one end of the valley to the other. He loved horses and loved helping others and making so many friends. There was not a shortage of horses or friends.
In September of 1995, Ralph married Verla Lee Butler. This union doubled the family size as she had five children also. Together they have brightened the oleâ€™ familiar corner in Jameston.
In 1997, Ralph was privileged to join the Mormon wagon train making its way from Nauvoo, Ill. to Salt Lake City, Utah. Somewhere in Nebraska, they discovered their 60 teams, plus the outriderâ€™s horses, were in trouble. The pavement wore down the shoes and the local ferriers just couldnâ€™t do the job. Ralph eagerly took the challenge and met up with the encampment doing his â€śangel workâ€ť as they called it. This buoyed Ralphâ€™s faith in his ancestors, himself and his religion. He was a valiant member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Most recently he served as a member of the High Priest group leadership.
In 2007, Ralph was honored to be inducted to the Eastern Idaho Horsemanâ€™s Hall of Fame. It was very special to Ralph, as his father and later his brother Dale had received the award.
His life was a legacy. He loved serving others and everywhere he went, there was always a smile or hello for everyone he met. He enjoyed all the friends he acquired along the way; he loved his family dearly, and loved teasinâ€™ the grandkids.
He is best described by a Shakespeare quote: â€śHis life is gentle, and the elements so mixed in him that nature might stand up and say to the world: This is a good man.â€ť
Ralph is survived by his wife, Verla Lee Butler Arave and their 10 children: Kathleen Arave, Leanne Arave, Keith (Kathleen) Arave, Amy (Joe) Ackershott, Micheal (Jennifer) Arave, Meshawn (James) Woolf, Josilyn (Troy) Halter, Jessica deJong, Jadon (Terry) Brock, all from Idaho, and David (Kenni) Brock from Nevada; and 21 grandchildren.
Also surviving are his sisters, Mae Kirkendall, Christine (Ron) Wheeler, LaRae (Ed) Kearsley, all of Idaho Falls, and his brothers Neal (Karen) Arave of California and Larry (Kerri) Arave of Fort Collins, Colo.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his first wife, Mary Patricia Burk Arave; brothers Dale L.Arave, Fred C.Arave, Keith J Arave, and Gary A Arave; son, William H Arave; and grandson, Dillon Michael Arave.
Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. Wednesday, March 28, 2012, at the Jameston Ward Chapel (1101 East 1250 North). The family will receive friends Tuesday from 7-8:30 p.m. at Nalder Funeral Home (110 West Oak) in Shelley and Wednesday from 9:30-10:40 a.m. at the church. Burial will be in the Shelley Hillcrest Cemetery. Military Rites will be by the David B. Bleak Post #93 assisted by the Idaho Honor Guard. Condolences can be sent to the family at www.nalderfuneralhome.com.