Traverse City Record-Eagle
---- — ELK RAPIDS — Ronald G. “Ron” Reffitt Jr., 46, of Elk Rapids, was called home to be with our Lord on the morning of March 14. At the time of his passing he was at Mayo Clinic’s St. Mary’s Hospital in Rochester, Minn., after recent treatment for recurring cancer.
Born Saturday, Dec. 31, 1966, in Grand Rapids, to Donna M. (Leazenby) and Ronald G. Reffitt Sr., Ron moved with his family to the Torch Lake area at three years of age.
He graduated from Elk Rapids High School in 1985.
Ron began working at his family’s business, Peninsula Construction, when he was 16. He was a talented, skilled carpenter and appreciated the perfection of a job well done. Over the years he built two homes for his family, working into the wee hours of the morning, oblivious to the time. He worked his way up in the family business, becoming a key member of the sales team and co-partner with his brother, Kevin, upon their father’s retirement.
Ron was an avid outdoorsman, enjoying hunting, fishing, biking and traveling. He loved nothing better than a Sunday drive in his truck.
As he battled cancer over the last four years he would make it a point to share his health story, inspiring others. Often he would say that to manage the pain you had to put your mind in a better place — which he did — never having a complaint, always having an upbeat attitude and a smile on his face. Above all, Ron sincerely loved his children, grandchildren, parents, brother, nieces, fiancée and her children.
Ron is survived by his children, Jennifer (Brandon) Springstead, of Rapid City, Ronald G. Reffitt III, of Kewadin, Cody Reffitt, of Elk Rapids; his grandchildren, Blake, Tegan and Jaxon; his parents, Donna and Ron Reffitt Sr.; his brother, Kevin (Dawn) Reffitt, of Rapid City; his nieces, Kennedy, Cameron and Cassidy; his best friend and fiancée, Diane Campbell, of Elk Rapids; and his buddy, April. Also surviving is the mother of his children, Tami Reffitt.
Ron was preceded in death by his grandparents.
Visitation will be held at Bayview Wesleyan Church, 720 Wayne Street, Traverse City, Tuesday, March 19, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., with the funeral service to begin at 1 p.m. The Rev. Gary Bekkering, of First Congregational Church of Central Lake, will officiate. Burial will be held at Fairview Cemetery in Mancelona in the spring.
The family has asked that Ron be remembered through memorial contributions to Mayo Clinic, 200 First St. SW, Rochester, MN 55905 (www.mayoclinic.org/development); or to a charity of your choice.
Please share your memories, stories and photos of Ron by visiting his online guestbook/tribute page at www.reynolds-jonkhoff.com .
The family is being served by Reynolds-Jonkhoff Funeral Home and Cremation Services.