Edward “Jack” Ragatz, Jr., age 81 of Stanley, passed away
peacefully on March 15, at Mayo Health Hospital, Eau Claire, with
Margie (his wife) and Julie (his daughter) by his side.
Jack was born in Madison, WI on April 23, 1937 to Edward and
Hazel (Vinger) Ragatz, Sr. Jack started school in Madison, WI and
moved with his family to Stanley at the age of 9. He attended
Lincoln Grade School in Stanley, and graduated from Stanley High
School in 1955. Jack attended St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN for
one year and then transferred to Wisconsin State College (now
UW- Eau Claire) where he obtained a Bachelor of Science degree
in Economics, Sociology & Psychology in 1960.
After college, Jack joined the Wisconsin National Guard and spent
six months active duty at Fort Leonard Wood, MO, and Fort Riley in
Kansas. He joined his father in the insurance business in 1961, but
after six months, he was called to active duty during the Berlin
Crisis and spent ten months at Fort Lewis, near Tacoma, WA with
the Army National Guard 121st Artillery of the 32nd Division. After
discharge in 1962, he went back to the insurance business, and
remained at the Ragatz Insurance Agency for over 40 years until
he sold it to the State Bank of Withee in 2001, and fully retired in
On June 14, 1958, he married Margaret (Margie) LaBonte and they
adopted Jeffrey in December 1965 at age of seven weeks, and
then adopted Julie in January 1968 at age of three weeks. Jeff and
Julie were the joys of their lives.
Jack was a faithful member of Our Savior’s Lutheran Church,
serving on the church council, a longtime member of the Stanley
Commercial Club, and spent 45 years as a member of the Stanley
Lions Club, serving as an officer and currently, the Board of
Directors. He was an avid Packer and Badger fan, and loved
listening to jazz music.
Jack and Margie enjoyed traveling including trips to Acupulco,
Puerta Vallarta, Ixtapa, Cancun and Playa del Carmen all in Mexico.
They also traveled to Jamaica, British Virgin Islands, Hawaii,
Switzerland, Italy, Austria, Germany, Belgium, Netherlands, France,
England and Scotland. They traveled to most of the states in the
USA. His biggest enjoyment was the many fishing trips he made to
Canada with his father, son, brother, and many fishing friends. He
was an avid musky fisherman and has two mounted muskies on
loan to Oemig’s Sport Shop in Stanley.
Jack and Margie spent summer weekends at their trailer on the
Chippewa Flowage at Tiger Musky Trailer Park for over 50 years
with their children and grandchildren. They spent winters in Florida
for 15 years at Harbor Lakes RV Park where they had many friends
and enjoyed an active life. Jack also enjoyed golfing during his
Jack is survived by his wife of 60 years, Margie of Stanley, children
Jeffrey (Christy) Ragatz of Brooklyn Park, MN and Julie (Bob)
James of Shakopee, MN and six grandchildren he adored, Kayla,
Alyssa and Miranda Ragatz, Morgan and Jack James (who is
named after his “grandpa”), and Christopher James of Prior Lake,
MN. He is also survived by one brother, Ted (Marsia) Ragatz of
Lancaster, WI, many nieces and nephews and wonderful friends.
He was preceded in death by his mother and father, Edward and
A funeral service will be held at 11:00 on Thursday, March 21 at
Our Savior’s Lutheran Church with Pastor Ken Schmidt officiating.
Visitation will be held at the Plombon Funeral Home in Stanley on
Wednesday night, March 20th from 5:00-7:00 pm and Thursday
morning one hour prior to services at the church. Inurnment in the
Evergreen Cemetery will take place at a later date.