FAIRMONT - Funeral services for Raymond Ritz, 91, of Fairmont, Minn., formerly of Truman, Minn., will be 10:30 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 22, 2013, at St. Paul's Lutheran Church, Truman with Rev. Nathan Rusert officiating. Interment with full military honors by Oles-Reader-Bosshart American Legion Post 115 of Truman, will be held in St. Paul's Lutheran Cemetery, Truman.
Raymond died Sunday, Aug. 18, 2013, at Lakeview Methodist Health Care Center in Fairmont. Visitation will be 5-7 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013, at Zaharia Family Funeral and Cremation Service, Truman, and one hour before the services Thursday in the church.
Raymond Henry Julius Ritz was born Feb. 24, 1922, on the family farm near Truman, to William and Hulda (Urban) Ritz. He was baptized in February 1922 and confirmed in 1936, both at St. Paul's Lutheran Church in Truman. Ray attended District 6 country school and St. Paul's Lutheran Parochial School. He graduated from Truman High School with the class of 1940. Ray enlisted in the U.S. Army on May 14, 1944, and was assigned to the 71st Infantry Division serving in the European Theatre. Staff Sergeant Ritz was assigned to Dachau Concentration Camp overseeing many prisoners. After the war, he remained in Germany with the Intelligence Corps using his ability to speak German to see if the Germans were planning an uprising. Ray was discharged on June 11, 1946. Ray's ownership of an airplane afforded him to fly to Rochester to court his future wife, Elaine Muller. They were united in marriage on June 19, 1954, in Osage, Iowa. Ray farmed in the Truman area and was a school bus driver, worked at Carrol's Market, the Post Office and was the Martin County Veterans Service Officer. Ray was an active member at St. Paul's Lutheran Church. He was a member of the Oles-Reader-Bosshart American Legion Post 115. Ray was an avid coin collector.
Ray is survived by his wife of 59 years, Elaine Ritz, Fairmont, Minn.; one daughter, Debra Manley of Hugo, Minn.; one granddaughter, Jacklyn Gronholz of Minneapolis, Minn.; and numerous nephews, other relatives and friends.
Ray was preceded in death by his parents; two sons-in-law, Jon Gronholz and Mike Manley; two brothers, Clarence Ritz and Roger Ritz in infancy; and one sister, Gladys Anderson.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions are preferred to St. Paul's Lutheran Church and School, Truman and Martin Luther High School, Northrop.