Don Rippberger, 78, beloved husband, father, grandfather, and great grandfather, died peacefully at St. Lukes Hospital in Duluth on July 1, 2013.
As his wife of 60 years put it, his stories will fill the heavens now; his adventures are not over.
Don was career military, serving in both the Army and Air Force, and was a Korean and Vietnam veteran. After retiring from the Air Force he went on to receive a degree in sociology from the University of Minnesota, Duluth. He worked for a period of time at a correctional facility, and eventually retired to embark upon his lifelong dream of travelling across the country with his wife (whom he would call his copilot, or naviguesser).
Don was always an adventurer, and travelled the world, entertaining many with his stories (yes, most of them were true). His greatest love, however, were his wife, children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. He will be remembered for his tender heart, the shared adventures, and for his love of all the chaos, noise and joyful memories a houseful of children brings.
Don was preceeded in death by his fourth child, Denise, who died in 1994 at the age of 31; mother, Bernice; father, Howard; and younger brother, James.
He is survived by his wife, Coral Rippberger; daughters, Julie Reyes, Diane Lundin, and Laura Rippberger; sons, James Rippberger and John Rippberger; sixteen grandchildren and seventeen great grandchildren; brother, Jay Rippberger; and sister Joni Combs.
SERVICE: 11 a.m. Saturday, July 6, 2013 at French River Lutheran Church, 5310 Ryan Rd., with visitation 1 hour prior to the service at the church. Interment will be at Fort Snelling National Cemetery in Minneapolis on Tuesday, July 9, 2013 at 12:45 PM. May RIP Rest in Peace. Memorials directed to the Disabled American Veterans would be appreciated.