Ronald J. “Ron” Peppin, age 85, of Delano, died Friday, Oct. 16 at his home up north.
A mass of Christian burial will take place for immediate family only, due to COVID-19 concerns Friday, Oct. 23 at 11 a.m. at St Peter Catholic Church in Delano, MN. A video link of the service will be available on the Iten Funeral Home website. Interment with military honors follows in the Calvary Cemetery in Delano.
In keeping with Ron’s spirit of enjoying life to the fullest, the family will celebrate his life with a gathering next summer to laugh, share stories, and hopefully hugs as well.
Arrangements are by Iten Funeral Home in Delano.
Ron was born Oct. 18, 1934, to Neal and Rose (Berneck) Peppin in Minneapolis, MN.
Ron was an Army veteran during the Korean conflict, based in England. He served overseas, until being called home due to a serious medical condition with his newborn son, Steven. He completed the rest of his military time in the Army Reserves.
Ron was a dedicated husband of 55 years to the love of his life, Millie. During Millie’s fight with cancer, he went to every one of the many, many doctor appointments/treatments; always supporting and encouraging her to fight. Following Millie’s death, at a routine medical check of his own, he asked the doctor if he had anything to fix a broken heart.
Ron was a proud member of IUOE Local 49, working many years in road construction alongside his son, David. In July 1988, he was involved in a near-fatal work accident, suffering a brain injury. The accident ended his work career and began a long recovery journey.
Ron spent many months in rehab at Sister Kenny Rehabilitation Institute re-learning how to do basic things, including walking. After being released from rehab, he spent a number of years volunteering at Sister Kenny, helping to modify wheelchairs and other medical equipment. He also visited many patients, offering words of encouragement.
During Ron’s lengthy rehab, he devoted time to another love of his, woodworking. He made many things for his kids and grandkids, sold items at craft sales, and gave away several of his handmade items as gifts.
Another passion for Ron was the northland, or what he called “God’s Country.” He purchased several acres of woods in Outing, MN, near his parents, brother, and ultimately his sons, and nephews. The Peppin crew spent many years deer hunting on the land. Over time, Ron created a vacation home with trails in the woods, a pond, and a huge garden. He enjoyed this special place up until the day he died.
Following Millie’s death, Ron moved to an assisted living apartment in Rogers, MN. It was there that he reignited his love of pool, and was known as the resident pool shark. Anyone visiting Ron knew they would be in for at least one game of pool, but more likely a two out of three contest.
Ron was the ultimate schmoozer and charmer, and was known for his many one-liners and hearty laugh. He enjoyed visits with his kids, grandkids, and great-grandkids.
He was also notorious for being extremely challenging to shop with (cars, shoes, furniture, etc.) due to the extensive time he spent “looking” before finally making a purchase. Ask any one of his kids and they certainly have a story to share.
Ron was preceded in death by wife, Millie; son, Steven; parents, Neal and Rose Peppin; brother, Richard Peppin; in-laws and spouses, Richard Schumacher, Ralph and Carmela Schumacher, Marvin Schumacher, Theresa Schumacher OSB; as well as parents-in-law, Arthur and Julia Schumacher.
He is survived by children and spouses, MaryEllen and Pat Grossman, David and Kathi Peppin, Paul and Becky Peppin, Shelly and Joe Blanchette, Mark Peppin and Lynn Anderson; seven grandchildren and spouses, Meghan Grossman and Eric Frahm, Abby and Ryan Wooley, Jenna and Brian Miller, Michael Peppin, Karly and Eric Schemenauer, Liz and Alex Vanderlinde, David N. and Erin Peppin; seven great-grandchildren, Violet and Veronica, Addyson and Kendall, Mason, Austin and Parker; sister-in-law, Mary Alice Peppin; in-laws and spouses, Don and Bev Schumacher, Rose and Paul Grengs, Julie Neddermeyer, Alicia and Skip Smith, and Lu Sheridan.