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SIDNEY - Memorial services for John Ratliff, 62, of Sidney, are at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 10, at the Church of Christ. Fulkerson Funeral Home of Sidney is in charge of arrangements. Memorials can be sent to the K-M Scout Ranch or the Yellowstone Bible Camp.

John Wesley Ratliff, age 62, passed away May 5, 2003, in Bismarck, N.D., after an extended illness. John was born to Ashley and Alta (Randolph) Ratliff, April 25, 1941, in Enumclaw, Wash. He graduated from Enumclaw High School in 1960. John played football for the Enumclaw Hornets and was very active in the FFA chapter with his prizewinning cow, Bess.

After high school, John attended Harding College in Searcy, Ark., and then transferred to Magic Valley Christian College in Albion, Idaho, to complete his degree in education. Later, he went on to complete his master's degree in education from Abilene Christian College in Abilene, Texas.

While attending Magic Valley Christian, John met Lois Fay Knote. They were married Sept. 1, 1952. Together, they had two children, Dohn (1966) and Rohn (1979).

John began his teaching career in Burley, Idaho, in the fall of 1965. John begin teaching in the Sidney schools in 1969, teaching grades fifth and sixth until his retirement in 1996.

John was an active member of the Sidney Church of Christ. John led singing, taught, preached and spent his retired years writing letters to an extensive list of shut-ins, college students, family and friends on a monthly basis. John loved painting, fishing and camping anywhere and anytime.

As a member of Jaycees, John's favorite phrase was, "Service to Humanity is the best work of life," and devoted his life to the youth of Sidney. His service to youth included work with AAU wrestling, 4-H, Elk's Hoop-Shoot, the Kiwanis Easter activities, fifth and sixth grade basketball coach, football coach, and most of all, the Boy Scouts of America.

John saw the movie, "Follow Me Boys" and decided he wanted to help with scouting. John began his 30 years as a scoutmaster while living in Burley and upon moving to Sidney, became the Scoutmaster of Troop 187 and Cubmaster of Packs 143 and 188. John truly believe in the Scout Oath and Law and helped many young boys become young men. John was proud of all the boys that made it to Scouting's highest rank of Eagle, but it was extra special for him when both of his sons earned the rank of Eagle. As a scout leader, John was awarded the Silver Beaver, Scouting's highest honor given to an adult volunteer.

John was generous with his time, his love and his laughter. He will be remembered always for the hours of tireless service to those he loved and by the many lives in the community and the state that were blessed by his devotion.

John is survived by his wife of 40 years, Lois; sons, Dohn (Maggie) and Rohn (Rachel); and two grandchildren, Manni and Charity, all of Sidney; brothers Estle (Pat) of Orting, Wash., and Raymond of Phoenix.

John was preceded in death by his father, Ashley, and mother, Alta.

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