Ralph Conrad Armstrong

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Armstrong, Ralph Conrad
On Dec 7, Ralph passed away peacefully at the age of 78, with his wife at his side. He is survived by his wife Olive; daughters: Sandra (Peter), Kim (John) and son Peter (Dana); grandchildren: Connor, Fiona, Reese and Riley and nieces and nephews.
The family would like to thank the staff and doctors at the University of Alberta Hospital Unit 5D3 for all their care and compassion.
A Celebration of Ralph’s Life will be held at The Yellowhead Brewery, 10229-105 street, on Saturday, December 13, 2014 at 11:00 a.m.. Join us to laugh, cry, share favourite stories and remember a life well lived.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Mazankowski Heart

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Priscilla Mugford

I first met Ralph when he and my husband and I were in our early twenties. They were young guys who had survived the foster care system but it had not survived them and were in essence ‘rescued’ and as a last resort given a home by Jim (who worked for the Children’s Aid) and his wife, Evie Gripton. The two of them roomed together and became good friends and they could pretty much say what they wanted to each other. Ralph was the most outspoken of the two and had his own way of expressing himself. I remember the first dinner I had with them – a birthday dinner the Griptons had for Ed and of course, Ralph was part of the celebration. My present to Ed was a sport shirt and when he opened it, Ralph exclaimed, “That’s the ugliest shirt I’ve ever seen!” The group erupted with laughter. My feelings were a bit hurt because I wasn’t used to Ralph’s way but everyone else just took it in stride. This was Ralph – take him or leave him. In later years, though I realized that he was right – the shirt was ugly!

Ralph was Ed’s best man at our wedding. But as soon as the wedding was over, he drove off and headed west. He didn’t have a job so didn’t have much money and he later admitted that the silver beer stein we’d given him as a gift had been traded for gas.

He was excited when he got a job as a journalist with the Edmonton Journal and was just as excited when he met his wife Olga – he was proud to say that she was Ukrainian, just like my family and then brought her back to Toronto to meet all of us. It was a short and sweet visit but he sure was proud of his wife who was now ‘his family’, something he’d never had before.

We kept in touch sporadically over the years, mainly through my correspondence with him – Ed wasn’t much of a writer but he liked hearing from Ralph’s and knowing how he was doing – Ralph had a wry sense of humour and a way with words so his letters were always interesting and his ‘rants’ were sometimes even fun to read.

A few years back one of his letters proudly told us all about his family. For a couple of foster kids who had a hell of a start in life, Ralph and Ed had done pretty well. Their families were their successes.

To Ralph’s family, my condolences to all of you. Ralph was one of a kind. I know he will be missed by all of you.

Priscilla (Percy) Mugford

Murray Potter

Follow up to posted Memories of Ralph
Sorry for a least three mistakes. If Ralph would have proof read the posting,I guarantee these mistakes would have been corrected. I blame the errors on small printing and fat fingers
Murray

Murray Potter

Memories of Ralph,
Ralph was an unique individual standing 6 ft 6in in his stocking feet.He was not a sportman or an outdoor an but rather an academic and scholar.He was a newspaper man by trade and worked for the Edmonton journal.
All Ralph,s endeavours where well researched-he checked Olga’s cooking skills prior to tying the knot!!.Reasearching” attic heat in houses”,Ralph installed a vent in their attic,which was quite a feat considerations his size.The vent failed.Ralph pursued the supplier and manufacture and was reimbursed not only for the vent but also his personal labour costs.
Ralph purchased” The Big Green Ford Extended Van” in the 70’s.To ensure the best price he mailed bid quotes to all the dealers within 50 miles of Edmonton.He later installed a rear wooden bumper making it one of a kind.
Ralph’s life long partner Olive was hie rudder and anchor.Together they raised their family,Sandra,Kim and Peter to be fine a adults.
We will always remember Ralph as a kind and considerate friend.
Rest in Peace Ralph
Marjorie and Murray

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