Forever in Our Hearts
Ralph Maurice Douglas, Sr.
August 31, 1929 – November 19, 2019
Ralph Maurice Douglas (Rocky 0), Sr, 90, was an extraordinary man who led a truly amazing life. His humble demeanor belied the powerful impact he had on everyone who had the opportunity to engage with him and to know him. He was an inimitable example of how to live one’s life to the fullest while always striving to being the best that you can be. “Anything worth doing is worth doing well” was one of his many notable sayings.
He taught us all so many of the most important things in life. How to use our minds, how to be kind, and generous. He taught us how to be mindful of how we treat others. He never hesitated to provide help to anyone who sought his wisdom and guidance and he was deeply respected for his calming, non-judgmental approach.
The full expansiveness of his accomplishments can only be highlighted here. The most notable being his tenure as Chief Communications Officer for the White House Communications Agency (WHCA) supporting Presidents Johnson, Nixon and Ford. He was the first African American to be selected for duty in WHCA where he rose to the rank of Chief Warrant Officer 4 (CWO4). That experience afforded him the opportunity to travel the world, all seven continents, and directly engage with world leaders.
During the course of his 27 years in the Army and Department of Defense Ralph was awarded numerous honors including a Purple Heart, Bronze Star Medal, Joint Service Commendation Medal and many more. In addition, he received a number of personal letters from the Presidents he served, high ranking Generals and a Secretary of State, all acknowledging his exemplary service and performance.
Ralph retired from the Department of Defense in 1975 and immediately transitioned to a leadership position within Pacific Bell. While at Pacific Bell he graduated from Saddleback College with an AA degree in Business Administration. After working 10+ years at Pacific Bell he started a tax preparation business and became an avid subject matter expert in financial planning and stock market investing. Dozens of family members and friends have benefited greatly from his selfless willingness to share his knowledge on wealth building and his overall, boundless generosity.
Over the years Ralph enjoyed many interests including cooking, bowling, golfing, painting, coin collecting, commemorative plate collecting, and he enjoyed learning new skills like skiing, playing tennis and the piano. In recent years he perfected his painting and wine making talents, and became an astute numismatist. His recipe testing was legendary. Many of us benefitted from his culinary successes with delicacies like cinnamon buns, Peking Duck and other incredible dishes.
He was an active member of Valley Bible Church and worked with the video ministry services there for a period of time. He was also involved with several non-profit organizations. In support of the community he lived in, he was a roving elections inspector for a number of years and provided free tax consulting services for elderly and low-income people through VITA, Volunteers Income Assistance Program sponsored by the IRS.
His stabilizing force will be greatly missed. We can all rejoice in knowing he lived life fully and on his terms.
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