Raymond John Ransom, age 77 of Merrillan, Wisconsin, passed away on March 17 th , 2023, after
a short, but courageous battle with ALS.
Ray was born on June 5 th , 1945, at Krohn Hospital, Black River Falls, WI, to Clyde and Anna
(Grancorvitz) Ransom. He attended Merrillan and Alma Center schools graduating in 1963. He
was known as an outstanding athlete. He was inducted into The Lincoln Hall of Fame in 2018.
He then went to UW – Eau Claire and earned his Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration
and English in 1967.
Ray married Rosemary Sanford in Black River Falls, WI in September 1965. Two sons were born
from this union. Reid and Ryan. The couple later divorced.
In 1977, the family moved from the Twin Cities area back to the Black River Falls area where
they owned and operated The Rivercrest Resort. Ray started his insurance career with The
Dimmick Agency in 1977. He was successful while working for others in the industry and later
while owning and operating his own agencies. After retirement, Ray enjoyed substitute
teaching at area schools.
In 1988, Ray married Barbara Windsor (Ladron). Through this marriage, Barb’s children Mike,
Julie and Brad were welcomed to Ray’s family. Barb passed away in 2006 after a long battle
Ray was well known for his time in public service and served in many capacities during his life
and received many awards and recognitions during this time. A few highlights of his service are
being Jackson County Board of Supervisors from 2010 until 2022, and as the Board Chairman
for over 6 of those years. He received the Humanitarian Award in 2022 from Jackson County
Health and Human Services. Some of the others that Ray was a part of are: the Town of White
Bear Lake Board of Supervisors, Black River Youth Hockey Board, 12 years on the Alma Center-Merrillan-Humbird School Board, Merrillan Village Board
Trustee and 12 years as Village President, Merrillan Methodist Church Board, Merrillan Masonic
Lodge for many years, becoming Worshipful Master at one time, and numerous other
organizations and entities.
Ray was an avid outdoorsman his entire life He truly loved spending his time hunting and
fishing with his many friends and his 2 sons. Whether fishing in Canada, elk hunting in Montana,
fur trapping in the local area, or deer hunting on the family land that he and his brother Gene
owned, he loved just being out there. Ray was able to harvest his last deer during gun season
Ray helped coach some of his sons’ teams over the years and enjoyed attending High School
sports events of any kind.
Later in life, Ray enjoyed spending as much time as he could with his many grandchildren and
great-grandchildren. He will truly be missed and remembered by many.
Raymond was preceded in death by his parents Clyde and Anna, brothers Richard and Dennis,
and wife Barbara.
Ray is survived by his brothers Gene (Judy) Ransom, and William (Alice) Grancorvitz; sons, Reid
Ransom (Tanya Lamon), and Ryan (Kimberly) Ransom, Mike (Janet) Windsor, Brad (Erica)
Windsor, and daughter Julie (Mark) Millis. He is further survived by 12 grandchildren, 19 great-
grandchildren and many extended family members.
In keeping with Ray’s wishes, there will be no burial at this time. Memorials are preferred in lieu
of flowers, ADRC of Jackson County for the meal delivery program, The Merrillan First
Responders, or the charity of their choice in his name.
There will be a visitation on Friday, March 31 st , 2023, at The Buswell Funeral Home in Black
River Falls, WI from 4pm -7pm.
There will be a service on Saturday, April 1 st , 2023, at Castle Hill Supper Club, Merrillan, WI
beginning at 11am with a luncheon to follow.
A Hunters’s Prayer
I pray that I am able to hunt until my dying day,
And when its time for my last trip I then must humbly pray,
That the Lord will surround me with all my friends,
To relive all the hunts from the past before entering his great forest at last.