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Ralph Edwin Billow

Posted By Scott Hanes On April 10, 2021 @ 9:05 pm In Obituaries | 8 Comments

Billow Ralph

Ralph Edwin Billow, 91, of Fremont, OH went to be with the Lord on Saturday, April 10, 2021 with his wife of seventy-two years at his side.  Ralph was born on September 9, 1929 in Fayette, OH to William and Allie (Cotton) Billow.  As a child his family relocated to the Fremont area and after attending several area schools he graduated in 1948 from Jackson Burgoon High School.  He married Juanita Linton on January 16, 1949 at the Fremont Nazarene Church.  Over the years he was associated with: the Sandusky County Ham Radio Club, Sandusky County Historical Society, the Sandusky River Valley Beekeepers Association, the Sandusky County Beautification Commission, Hayes Presidential Center, a Life member of the Ohio Historical Society, a Life member of the NRA, Ohio Historical Canoe Route Association (canoeing across Ohio five times), the Building and Grounds Advisory Committee at the Hayes Presidential Center and for many years a member of the Board of Trustees of the Fremont Church of the Nazarene.  In 1993 the Fremont Chamber of Commerce honored Ralph by presenting him with the Distinguished Service Award for that year.  For many years Ralph and his wife were familiar faces at area festivals where they made open-kettle apple butter.  The sale of their apple butter enabled them to finance an extended vacation to Australia to visit Juanita’s longtime penpal.  Among his many travels was a memorable Alaskan trip Ralph and two friends took in 1973.  They started from Fremont and drove the entire length of Alaska in a converted van (in which they slept) eating only one meal in a restaurant the entire trip.

He began his forty-three-year long career with the Hayes Presidential Center right out of high school as a chauffeur for Admiral Hayes (the grandson of President Rutherford B. Hayes) in 1949.  He eventually began working with the grounds superintendent as a gardener (his lifelong passion) and in 1958 he was promoted to his position as Superintendent of Grounds and Maintenance until his retirement in 1992.  In recognition of his forty-three years of faithful service and love for trees, the Hayes Presidential Center honored Ralph at an American Chestnut tree planting ceremony at Spiegel Grove in May of 2017 to reintroduce the species back to the Grove that President Hayes had begun in 1873.

After his retirement, Ralph and Juanita became faithful volunteers with Mobil Meals at Fremont Memorial Hospital for ten years.

Ralph is survived by his wife Juanita; sons, Ronald (Margaret), Dennis (Susan), Steve (Deborah), and son-in-law, James Collum; grandchildren, Mathew (Heather), Vaughn, Alison (Nate) Hyde, Timothy (Hailey), Stacy (Ian) West, Stephanie Billow, Lisa Foreman, Brendan and Zachary Collum; great grandchildren, Jackson and Piper Billow, Audrey, Lily, and Claire West.

He was preceded in death by his parents; sisters, Ruth Hawkins and Mary Suffecool; brothers, Clair and Wayne Billow and daughter, Elaine Collum.

In memory of Ralph, donations may be made to the Fremont Nazarene Church, Hayes Presidential Center, the Sandusky County Historical Society or Heartland Hospice.

Visitation will take place on Thursday from 2 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m. at the Fremont Church of the Nazarene, 1925 N Fifth St., Fremont, OH 43420.

Service will be Friday, April 16, 2021 beginning at 12:30 p.m. at the church with an hour of visitation prior with Pastor Dan Vickey officiating.

The use of face masks is highly recommended while indoors.  If you would prefer, you may express your condolences at www.whhfh.com or call the funeral home at 419-332-6409 to request that your name be signed in the guest book.

Burial will take place at Oakwood Cemetery.

View Ralph’s Memorial Video

Click below to view the Livestream of Ralph’s Funeral on Friday, April 16, 2021 at 12:30 p.m.

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8 Comments To "Ralph Edwin Billow"

#1 Condolence By Arlene (Tjaden) Garvin On April 10, 2021 @ 9:19 pm

To the Billow family, Ralph was an awesome man. I remember district Missionary meetings held at the Tiffin Nazarene church where my dad, Bill Tjaden would always try to get him to help with ushering, counting attendees , etc. Then I will never forget his friendliness when I began attending the Fremont Nazarene church with my family. He is having a wonderful time in heaven. Prayers

#2 Condolence By Karon (Tolhurst) Chrzan On April 12, 2021 @ 3:37 pm

Dear Juanita, Ron, Steve and Dennis,

I was saddened to hear of the passing of Ralph. He was a kind, generous and Godly man. He will be greatly missed, but I know he is in a better place with all of the people in Heaven he knows. Know that you all are in my thoughts and prayers during this difficult time. I pray that you will feel God’s presence there and His loving arms around all of you!

In Christ’s Love,
Karon (Tolhurst) Chrzan,
David Chrzan
John Morgan

#3 Condolence By jeanette gleba On April 12, 2021 @ 5:39 pm

My deepest sympathy and prayers to you all in the loss of your loved one!

#4 Condolence By Jeff and Barb Aldrich On April 13, 2021 @ 1:45 am

Dear Steve, Deb and Billow Family, Please accept our sincerest sympathies. May all the happy memories created together help you through this sorrowful time. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. Steve, if there is anything I can do, please, just let me know. Your Dad was a very special and knowledgeable person.

#5 Condolence By Dick and Carol Hoffman On April 13, 2021 @ 5:55 pm

To the Billow family, we send you our deepest sympathy on Ralph’s passing. Words never come easy during the loss of a loved one, the only thing we can offer is a Prayer that Our dear Lord will bring comfort and peace to you all, and that you may all enjoy the wonderful memories you have of Ralph.

#6 Condolence By Clarence Jones On April 14, 2021 @ 12:53 pm

To the family but especially Steve an Debbie our prayers and love are with you, ,Sonny and Joanne Jones

#7 Condolence By Tim Brown On April 16, 2021 @ 11:43 am

My sympathies to the Billow family, I did not know Mr. Billow, but I am grateful for his services at Spiegel Grove. My family was from Fremont, and many times in my youth in the 60’s I enjoyed walking the beautiful Spiegel Grove grounds. It is still a lovely place for my grandchild and I to visit, and a nice legacy for Mr. Billow.

#8 Condolence By James Weaver On April 16, 2021 @ 3:46 pm

To Juanita and family,
I’m sorry to hear of Ralph’s passing. He was a kind man and will be missed.
I enjoyed our time together as members of the Board of Directors at the Sandusky County Historical Society.
You are in my thoughts and prayers.
Jim Weaver


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