Harland “Harley” Errol Ratike, age 84, of Litchfield, passed away Saturday, Jan. 16, 2016, at the Meeker Memorial Hospital in Litchfield.
He was born May 30, 1931, in Fairmont, the son of Harry and Edna (Rasche) Ratike. Harley was baptized as an infant June 7, 1931, and was later confirmed in his faith as a youth March 25, 1945, both at Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church in Fraser Township, Martin County, MN.
He received his education at the parochial school in Northrop, and at the Martin Luther Academy in New Ulm.
Harley entered active military service in the United States Army June 17, 1948, in Winona, and served his country during peace-time. He received an honorable discharge May 16, 1952, at Fort Lee Virginia, and achieved the rank of corporal.
Harley was united in marriage to Rosaline Karau Jan. 23, 1954, at Fieldon Trinity Lutheran Church in Lewisville, MN. This marriage was blessed with three children, Terry, Russell and Kim.
Harley and Rosaline resided and farmed in rural Litchfield. They shared 62 years of marriage.
Harley was a farmer all his life, and retired from farming in April 1993.
He was a member of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Litchfield; Litchfield American Legion Post 104; and the Darwin Lions Club. He served as past president of the St. Paul’s Men’s Club, and the Darwin Farmers Elevator.
Harley enjoyed traveling, playing cards, and shaking dice with his buddies. He especially enjoyed spending time with his family, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and friends.
Harley is survived by his wife, Rosaline Ratike of Litchfield; children, Russell Ratike and his wife, Lori of Darwin, and Kim Pederson and her husband, Mark of Litchfield; grandchildren; Robbie Pederson and his wife, Amy, Jake Pederson and his wife, Crystal, Cody Ratike and his wife, Dana, Luke Ratike and his fiancée, Aili Grytdahl, and Andrea Wimmer and her husband, Brian; and great-grandchildren; Charlie Mundt, Peyton Ratike, Wyatt Ratike, Landon Pederson, and Lydia Pederson.
He is further survived by brothers, Willard “Bill” Ratike of Hutchinson, and Marvin “Butch” Ratike of Truman; and many other relatives and friends.
Harley was preceded in death by his parents, Harry and Edna Ratike; son, Terry Ratike, in infancy; and sisters, Ethel Petersen, and Ardis Rasche.
Funeral services took place Saturday, Jan. 23 at 1 p.m. at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Litchfield, followed by interment at Ellsworth (St. Peter’s Lutheran) Cemetery in rural Darwin. Military honors were provided by the Litchfield Honor Guard.
Visitation preceded the services at the church, beginning at 11 a.m.
The Hantge Funeral Chapel in Darwin handled the arrangements.