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Ralph H. Headrick
A funeral service was held at Lakewood Memorial Home Chapel on Saturday for Ralph Herbert Headrick, 93, of Hughson. He died Sept. 30, 2008 at his home.

Born June 18, 1915, Ralph was a native of Wears Valley, Sevier County, Tenn., as the eighth of nine children born to James Thomas Headrick and Hettie Texas King Headrick. He met his future wife, Erma Beck, after getting to know her as a pen-pal; they were married in Detroit, Mich., on Sept. 3, 1941. Mr. Headrick lived in eastern Tennessee where he worked as a truck driver for the Alcoa aluminum plant. Ralph was drafted in 1943, enlisted in the Navy and served in the South Pacific. One of his Navy jobs was to repair battle damaged antenna connections on the newly invented system known as RADAR, aboard U.S. destroyers. He was also part of a five-man crew on a pilot boat, occasionally taking officers from ship to shore at Hylandia, New Guinea. The crew once ferried General Douglas MacArthur to shore. Ralph was honorably discharged in November 1945. He and Erma, who had joined the Army Nurse Corps and tended wounded soldiers at Fort Benning, Ga., were reunited and moved to Hughson in 1946. Mr. Headrick worked for a time as the maintenance electrician at the Riverbank Army Ammunition Depot. Ralph was a member of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Union, local 684, for 56 years. He helped to carefully and properly wire many businesses in central California, including the Hershey plant in Oakdale, and pumps at the San Luis Reservoir in Los Banos, as well as local schools. After retiring, he farmed grapes, walnuts and alfalfa near Hughson. He was a member of the First Baptist Church of Modesto.

He leaves behind his wife of 67 years, Erma Lorraine Beck Headrick of Hughson; two sons, David Headrick of Merced and Gordon Headrick of Modesto; four grandchildren, Joshua Headrick of Modesto, Lora Burnett of Murphy, Texas, Rebecca Headrick of Chicago, Ill., and Abby Peretz of Merced; and three great-grandchildren, Joseph Burnett and John Burnett, both of Murphy, Texas and Molly Murdock of Merced.

Remembrances may be sent to Community Hospice, Community Hospice, 4368 Spyres Way, Modesto CA 95356.

-Ceres (Calif.) Courier /October 8, 2008