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John Ras June 4, 1911 - June 5, 2009

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WILLMAR -- John Ras, 98, of Willmar died Friday at Rice Care Center in Willmar.

The service will be 11 a.m. Monday at Cornerstone Baptist Church in Willmar. Burial will be in Hillside Cemetery in Kerkhoven.

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Visitation will be from 4 to 6 p.m. Sunday at Peterson Brothers Funeral Home in Willmar and one hour before the service at the church.

He was born June 4, 1911, in De Wilp, Groningen, Netherlands, to Albert and Henrietta (Middle) Ras. The family immigrated to the United States in 1920, and settled in New Jersey. They later lived in Michigan and Montana before moving to Minnesota.

He married Elizabeth Schouten on April 29, 1931, and they lived and farmed on John's farm near Crookston. They moved to Hancock where he farmed and operated the Ras Service Station. They later to Willmar where he worked as a furniture repairman for Erickson's Furniture. They then lived in Kerkhoven and Pennock where he owned a blacksmith shop, worked for the Kerkhoven Fertilizer Plant and did custom combining. They retired in the 1990s and returned to Willmar. He had resided at Rice Care Center since 2002.

He attended Bethel Baptist Church in Kerkhoven and later Cornerstone Baptist Church in Willmar.

He is survived by his children: Dale (and Leila) Ras of Marion, S.D., and Harriet Carlson (and Carl Jones) of Willmar; six grandchildren; 15 great-grandchildren; four great-great-grandchildren; and one brother: Alfred (and Bernie) Ras of Twin Lake, Mich.

He was preceded in death by his wife in 2002; two sons-in-law: Virgil Clark in 1974 and Leslie Carlson in 1999; one grandson; and one great-grandson.

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