Ralph Wayne Denton
Ralph was born July 16, 1938, in Quapaw, Okla., to Maude Mae (Pliler) and Ralph Calvin Denton. He was the third of five children and the firstborn son. He was a favorite play-toy for his older sisters and the apple of his grandfather’s eye. His family moved to Murtaugh, Idaho, when Ralph was 9 years old. He graduated from Murtaugh High School in 1955 and went to work with his father drilling water wells throughout Idaho and Nevada. Ralph married his high school sweetheart and the love of his life, Frances Marie Hoover, on Sept. 20, 1958. He worked as a well driller and took over the family business when his father passed, with Frances traveling along with him. Their firstborn daughter, Angela, brought a new joy and excitement to his life. Then 10 years later, Ralph and Frances welcomed another daughter, Amy, to complete their family.
Ralph continued drilling wells but missed his family when away, so he took a position with U.S. Steel working with farmers selling fertilizer and chemicals. He managed a U.S. Steel plant in Hansen, then moved to Rangen’s Inc. in a similar capacity in the Curry/-Filer/Buhl area. After a number of years with that company, Ralph played an active part in the development of Plant Foods Inc. and devoted his working years to developing relationships with and serving his farming customers. Ralph worked for PFI until his death.
Ralph was a very active man. He enjoyed archery, horse showing and team roping in his earlier years. He was passionate about raising sheep on the family’s acreage, breeding registered Suffolks, then 4-H lambs for kids in his later years. Ralph was very involved as a 4-H sheep club leader, guiding both daughters and granddaughters through the 4-H program. He maintained his involvement in the 4-H program after they had grown, serving as a sheep show judge at fairs around the state and region. He eventually became the superintendent of the sheep barn for the Twin Falls County Fair. Ralph also served two terms on the Twin Falls County Fair Board, with one of those terms as the chairman.
Ralph’s faith in God sustained him throughout his life, and he was devoted to his church, the First Christian Church in Twin Falls, where he served as an elder. Ralph was a stoic, honest, Christian man who lived a life of integrity and faithfulness.
Ralph is survived by his wife of 54 years, Frances; his daughters, Angela (Jim) Baker and Amy (Travis) Rothweiler; his two granddaughters, Darbie (Tom) Chocker and Rylie Baker; and his two grandsons, David and Jackson Rothweiler. He is also survived by three sisters, Lela Alexander, Lola Stecklein and Sharon Ross; one brother, Donald Denton; and many nieces, nephews and dear friends. He was preceded in death by his parents and an infant daughter.
A service in celebration of Ralph’s life will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, March 30, at the First Christian Church in Twin Falls. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in memory of him to the First Christian Church of Twin Falls.
Arrangements are under the direction of Parke’s Magic Valley Funeral Home of Twin Falls.