Ralph Wolfgang Beyer, 91, passed away Jan. 18, 2016, in St. George, Utah, from complications due to congenital heart failure. Ralph was born in Chemnitz, Saxony, Germany, Sept. 5, 1924, to Fritz Guido and Johanna Frohm Beyer.
He was brought to the United States from Germany at age 3, where his family settled in Salt Lake City. His father died when he was 8, and his mother worked all her life to support her little family. He has always loved music and even from an early high school age, started his own dance bands.
He served in the U.S. Army during WWII in the Pacific as an aircraft gunner. He was transferred to Hawaii where he joined the military band. During that time, his band played in Hawaii, Iwo Jima and Okinawa for Bing Crosby, Eddie Bracken, Bob Hope and Doris Day.
He served an honorable LDS mission in Switzerland. After returning to the states, he formed a dance band that performed in various locations. He attended the University of Utah and studied music.
At this time, he met his eternal sweetheart, Theda Lou Christensen. They became engaged Christmas day, 1951, and were married Feb. 6, 1953, in the Salt Lake LDS Temple. Ralph started his own music store, “Ye Music Box” on State Street in SLC and has owned music stores in both California and Southern Utah.
He has served faithfully in many church callings throughout his life and has remained a strong and devoted member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He has always been a hard-working individual, encouraging his children in their pursuit of music. He has loved his family and given them a good example of industry, faith and devotion to family.
He is survived by: his wife, Theda Lou Beyer; children, Kelley (Lynn) Ivey, Gregory R. (Ming Hua) Beyer, Heather (Peter) Karstens, Lori (Steve) Arnold, Denise (Peter) Baumert, Kristine (Darin) Leach and Val J. Beyer; and 23 grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Even though his family is saddened at his passing, they celebrate the wonderful life of their father and husband.
- Funeral services will be held Saturday, Jan. 23, 1 p.m., at the Santa Clara Valley LDS Chapel, 3040 Santa Clara Drive, Santa Clara, Utah.
- A viewing will be held Friday, Jan. 22, 2016, 6:30-8 p.m. at the Chapel
- An additional viewing will be held Saturday, 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., also at the chapel.
- Interment with Military Honors will follow the service at the Santa Clara City Cemetery.
Family and friends are invited to share condolences online. Arrangements and memorial tree planting have been made under the direction of Serenity Funeral Home of Southern Utah, 435-986-9100.