James “Jim” Ripple

Thursday, October 5, 2023 9:53 pm

James Ripple age 93 of Decorah, passed away peacefully on Oct. 4, 2023, at Wellington Place in Decorah.

There are no formal services planned for Jim.

Jim was born on Nov. 10, 1929, in Maquoketa, Iowa. He was married to Donna Moorhead, also of Maquoketa.  Theirs was a marriage of nearly 70 years until Donna’s passing in 2019. Jim is survived by his children: Elizabeth (Kevin) Smith, Naples, Fla.; Peggy Thompson, Brookfield, Wis.; Sally (Tony Clarke) Ripple, Decorah; and Andrew (Debbie) Ripple, Atlanta, Ga.; grandchildren: James Thompson, Kayla Ripple, Daniel Thompson, Nolan Ripple and Emily Ripple; and sister: Florence Steenburgen of Missouri.

Jim was preceded in death by his parents: Arthur and Oma Ripple; sister: Lois Ripple; and brother: Ronald Ripple.

After high school, Jim proudly served his country from 1948 to 1950 in the newly formed United States Air Force. After his tour of service, Jim pursued his dream of working for the Iowa Conservation Commission as a Game Warden, alas, he was too young.  However, he wasn’t too young for the Iowa Highway Patrol.  He was posted to the SE Iowa region and worked there until he was old enough to transfer to the Iowa Conservation Commission, now known as the DNR, where he worked briefly as a game warden.  He was soon advanced to the position of Recreational Unit Manager and oversaw the management of recreational areas in Panora, Russel and Wapello, Iowa as he raised his young family.  Later, he was promoted to the position of Wildlife Biologist for the NE Iowa area living in Waukon and then eventually Decorah.  Many were the happy memories he had of his service in this area and especially his work on the Mississippi River as “River Rat”.

Memorials in memory of Jim may be submitted to Decorah Parks & Recreation, 400 Claiborne Dr., Decorah, IA 52101.  Specifically for the care and upkeep of the Butterfly Garden and Community Prairie that is along the Upper Iowa River that Jim and Donna loved so much.

Helms Funeral Home is assisting with arrangements.

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JoAn Stevenson
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7 months ago

My sincere condolences 💐
JoAn Stevenson