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Ralph E. Piehl, 86

Ralph Edward Piehl, age 86, of Silver Lake, died Tuesday, May 10, 2011, at his residence.

He was born Sept. 25, 1924, in Stewart, the son of Erbin “Pappy” and Marie Sell Piehl.

Ralph was joined in holy marriage to Helen Pofahl Sept, 30, 1948, at Zion Lutheran Church, west of Hutchinson. God blessed their marriage with two sons: Gary and Gene.

Ralph has resided in Silver Lake since 1950, moving there from Stewart.

He owned and operated Ralph Piehl’s Bus Company for over 48 years. Ralph also raised pigs, which also led to his hobby of collecting pigs.

Ralph liked classic cars, and in the past few years, he enjoyed riding his Gator.

His grandchildren and great -granddaughter were very special to him.

Ralph was a member of Grace Bible Church in Silver Lake, a lifetime member of Silver Lake American Legion Post 141, and a lifetime member of the VFW in Hutchinson.

He is survived by his loving wife, Helen; sons Gary Piehl of Cokato, and Gene (Nancy) Piehl of Silver Lake; three grandchildren: Heidi and special friend Bob, Mike and fiancée Heather, and Janae and special friend Jarrod; a great-granddaughter, Emma; a brother, Gerald (Bernice) Piehl of Hutchinson, a sister, Myra Bushard of Gibbon and special friend Melvin; and many other relatives and friends.

Ralph was preceded in death by his parents, Erbin “Pappy” and Marie Piehl; and by a great-grandson, Kaydin Salisbury.

Funeral Services took place Friday, May 13 at 1:30 p.m. at Grace Bible Church in Silver Lake with Dr. Tom Rakow officiating. Interment followed at Grace Bible Cemetery with military rites provided by the Silver Lake American Legion.

Visitation was Thursday, May 12 from 4 to 8 p.m. at The Maresh Funeral Home in Silver Lake, with a prayer service at 7 p.m.; and continued Friday for one hour prior to the services at the church.

Honorary casket bearers were George Lhotka and Loren Pulkrabek.

Casket bearers were Mark Hanke, Tim Pofahl, Myron Bishman, Al Piehl, Matthew Frauenshuh, and Ronald Johnson.

The Maresh Funeral Home in Silver Lake served the family. Online condolences may be made to www.mareshfuneralhome.com