In Memoriam

Ralph Roland Ross, Jr.
July 19, 1945 - March 1, 2016

Ralph R. Ross, Jr., also known affectionately by family and friends as Bob or Bobby, passed away March 1, 2016 at his home in the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania. Bobby is survived by his mother, Florence Ross, of Viera, Fla.; his brothers Mike (Sara), of Panama City, Fla., and Grant (Mary Yan), of Orlando, Fla.; nephews Brian, Spencer and Alix; grandnephews Andrew and Jacob; and grandnieces Sophia, Gabriella and Shonna. He was predeceased by his father, Lt. Col. Ralph R. Ross, Sr., and his sister Kimberly Ann Doyle. Bobby is also survived by his life partner Linda Kearney.

Born in Pyote, Texas on Rattlesnake AFB on July 19, 1945 and having been raised in an Air Force family, Bobby aspired from an early age to follow in his father's footsteps. In pursuit of this dream, he set and achieved high academic goals, athletic success in football and wrestling in high school and leadership as his senior class president of Annandale High, Annandale, Va. He failed to receive his appointment upon graduation but qualified for a scholarship to Culver Military Academy as preparation for his admittance into his Academy class in 1964.

Bobby is an alumnus of The Air Force Academy, Class of 1968. Upon graduation he was assigned to the Strategic Air Command where he had assignments in Cheyenne, Wyo., where he served as a missile officer; then in Guam as protocol officer and ended his career in St. Louis, Mo. While on assignment in Southeast Asia he earned a Bronze Star for Meritorious Service.

His classmates at the Academy will acknowledge that Bobby put up some resistance to the structure of Academy life and Bobby always believed that he held the record for doing "tours" his freshman year for failing to adhere to the rules. Known for his outgoing personality and social manners, he endeared himself to many of his classmates and was recognized for this in his yearbook.

Bobby's identity throughout his life was one of simple consistency, hard work, endurance, friendliness, trustworthiness, loyalty, honesty, optimism, helpfulness, and bravery. He never met a stranger and would always show genuine interest for anyone he met. He made any of his friends feel like family and his bond with his friends had no limit.

All of his personality traits were only enhanced by his military experience. Like many, his service to his country was always considered a privilege as an American. His pride for his service came out only occasionally, but when it did it was clear that it was an honor that he felt strongly about.

After his service in the Air Force he pursued a career in business and entrepreneurship that included sales, finance and property management. His successes in business were always a foregone conclusion for anyone who knew Bobby's persistence. His researching nature and his resolve to achieve the goals he set, provided him with all he needed for success.

His love for his family was always clearly demonstrated to his parents and his two brothers and sister. After his father passed, Bobby made sure that his mother was his priority and showed his love by living close to her and looking after her needs.

Bobby's now rests at Cape Canaveral National Cemetery in Mims, Fla. near the ocean and his home in Cocoa Beach that he loved. Bobby's spirit will endure with his friends and family that remain.                                        (Mike Ross, Bobby's younger brother)

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