Ralph Geinger’s Story Continues
September 10, 1959 – August 15, 2020
We never expected that we would have to say goodbye to our loving father, grandfather, husband, and son so soon in life, but on August 15th, 2020, Ralph William Geinger passed away after losing a hard fought battle with his heart. When we lost dad, one of our mentors and a huge part of our farming operation was gone and an overwhelming workload still remained. Our family was incredibly blessed and so appreciative of the heartfelt love and support we received from our extended family, friends and our community. We were very thankful to Mark Shologan and thought it was quite fitting and special that dad’s service could be viewed on cattle vids, the very same place our bull sale videos are viewed each year. While getting prepared for the day, one of our dearest friends described the online gathering as “The grand champion bull’s final auction”. As we move forward, we’d like to honor him and pay tribute to a life well lived as we continue to build his dream and work in the industry that he loved, on the farm that meant so much to him.
Ralph was born on September 10, 1959 and raised along with his sister Linda, by their loving parents Frank and Fern Geinger. As a child, he was easy to raise, and he never caused much grief for his parents. Right from the time, he was old enough to walk; Ralph was interested in farming and spent an awful lot of time outside with his own dad and his grandpa Bill watching, asking lots of questions and learning. His love of learning continued throughout his school years, as he strove for perfect attendance and top marks, which would eventually earn him the honor of being the class valedictorian. He attended school in Mayerthorpe and went on to study agriculture at Olds College, but after only one year he decided he’d already been taught everything he needed to know about farming from his own father and grandfather so he chose to stay home and work on the family farm where he could be closer to the woman that he loved.
Ralph married Karen, his high school sweetheart, on October 25th, of 1980. They were married in the United Church in front of their friends and family and shared 40 wonderful years together. Shortly after marrying, they began a family of their own. Over the years they were blessed with four children, Amanda, Kevin, Kyle and Tenielle. Ralph enjoyed watching his kids grow and shared many of his favorite hobbies with them.
Life Brought Him Joy
Aside from his family and farming, Ralph had a few other loves. He was in a couple of different bands over the years. As a child he played the accordion in a band called the Country Kids. They knew five songs and enjoyed playing at local dances. In the early 1980s Ralph started a band called White Line. This venture brought some great friends into his life and although things were busy with farming and raising young kids, we will never forget the joy in dad’s voice when he spoke of those years. Another of dad’s most beloved hobbies was curling. He watched his parents curl from a young age and was intrigued by the sport. He began curling in high school and spoke fondly of the memories he made with his teammates. After he graduated, curling became a pastime that Ralph and Karen enjoyed together, and later on, Kevin and Kyle were fortunate to curl with him as well. They remember many laughs created by Ralph, upstairs in the Mayerthorpe Curling Rink.
Last but not least, growing up, we heard many stories about his fastball days, the ball, the boys and the fun times they had. Dad’s eyes lit up every time he talked about his old team and many of the best times of his life were had with those guys. After fastball ended, Ralph and Karen got into slow pitch. It was great because it was something they could do together with other couples; Ralph did not enjoy the ball quite as much, but the company was just as good. No matter where dad was or what he was doing, he always surrounded himself with good people. A family friend, Darla Masterson, sent a message shortly after his passing that made all of us smile and cry at the same time. She said that whenever there was an event somewhere, everyone wanted to get near to where he was sitting as you were always guaranteed a great time with full on belly laughs. We think that truly describes our dad.
Ralph’s grandchildren brought so much joy into his life. They meant the world to him and all of them loved him so much. His favorite thing to do was cuddle up with as many of them as he could on his chair. No matter how tired or sore he was after a day of work, he still put everything he had left into showing his grandkids how much he loved them. We wish that they could have had more time with him.
A Farmer at Heart
Being a third generation farmer, it was never just a job to Ralph, it was a way of life and he loved it. Dad’s truest passion besides family and friends was farming. He worked right up to his last day and he wouldn’t have wanted it any other way. Dad had recorded a little video last year in anticipation of the online sale and Gunner found it on his mom’s phone. He is often found watching it and we wanted to share a last thought from our dad with you that we feel really sums up how he felt about farming and how proud he was of Anchor 1 Angus.
“The simple things we get to bare witness to every day like the magic of a baby calf being born, his mother’s instant affection for him and his jubilation at discovering that first teet as his tail waves rhythmically in the air with every swallow or just seeing those older calves take off at a 100 miles an hour across the pen on a beautiful sunny winter’s day. I know grain farmers often comment on how they love watching their crops grow and mature throughout the summer but for me that’s a little akin to watching paint dry. For me, as well as I’m sure for many of you, watching those baby calves running and playing, growing and developing especially if you take one of these Anchor 1 bulls home to work your pastures this summer, (just a little plug there), is what it’s really all about and is always the highlight of my day. I’m excited about the bulls we have for offer this year, probably some of the best ever and even more excited about the direction our herd is heading.”