Ralph Kenneth Knudsen, age 91, of Breckenridge, MN, passed away, surrounded by his loving family, on Sunday, June 5, 2022, at St. Catherine’s Living Center, Wahpeton, ND. Visitation will begin at 9:30 AM to 10:30 AM, Friday, June 10, 2022, followed by the funeral service at 10:30 AM, at Inspiration Lutheran Church, Breckenridge, MN. Burial will be held in Knollwood Cemetery, Fergus Falls, MN. Pastor Tim Collins will be officiating the service. Arrangements have been entrusted to Joseph Vertin and Sons Funeral Home, Breckenridge.
Ralph was born on May 18, 1931, the son of Howard Gerhard Knudsen and Nellie Victoria (Endreson) Knudsen and grew up on a farm near White Rock, SD. His family relocated to a farm near Doran, MN, and then to Fergus Falls, MN, near Swan Lake. He graduated in 1949 from the West Central School of Agriculture in Morris, MN. After graduating, Ralph joined the United States Army from 1952-1954. During his time in the Army, he was stationed at Fr. Knox before his deployment to Germany. After returning home, Ralph went to the North Dakota State College of Science (NDSCS) for two years and received a diploma in the Electronic and Radio/TV Department. He then worked for Cruze Electric in Morris for seven years and then Ralph moved to Minneapolis, MN, where he worked for Ecklin Radio providing tv repair services.
On December 28, 1963, Ralph was united in marriage to Carol C Johnson in Fergus Falls, MN. They made their home in Breckenridge where they raised their three sons, Steve, Doug, and Dan. Ralph began a career with NDSCS in 1964 and taught in the electronics department for the next 25 years. After retiring in 1989, he and Carol enjoyed traveling to new destinations and they especially enjoyed their vacation to Norway. Above all, they loved traveling to Idaho and the Twin Cities to spend time with their grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He and Carol were charter members of Inspiration Lutheran Brethren Church. He was active in several church offices and was a trusted Elder for many decades. Carol went to be with the Lord on May 28, 2005.
Ralph met Connie Kinneberg and developed a friendship through a support group led by Jeanne Putnam after they both experienced the loss of their spouse. After knowing each other for a number of years, they were married on July 16, 2016, at Inspiration Lutheran Brethren Church, in Breckenridge. Ralph was truly blessed to find the second and final true love of his life marrying Connie and loved spending time with their blended family. Their grandchildren were very important to Ralph and he has influenced each of their lives in the best ways.
Ralph had a passion for woodworking and made numerous wooden toys for his grandchildren and extended family.
Ralph was preceded in death by his first wife, Carol Knudsen; parents, Howard and Nellie Knudsen; siblings, Anita Sanker and Donald Knudsen.
He is survived by his wife, Connie Kinneberg Knudsen; children, Steve (Zena) Knudsen, Doug (Kae) Knudsen, and Dan (Terri) Knudsen; five step-children, Lynn (Debbie) Kinneberg, Keith (Karen) Kinneberg, Matt (Pam) Kinneberg, Tony (Jayne) Kinneberg, Julie (Eric) Rosenberg; 10 grandchildren; 7 great-grandchildren; 15 step-grandchildren; 6 great-step grandchildren; brother, Ronald (Anne) Knudsen; sister-in-law, Elizabeth Knudsen; and brother-in-law and his spouse, Curt (Lita) Johnson.