Died peacefully at Georgian Bay General Hospital, Midland, Aged 90.
Ralph was born at home in Aylmer, Ontario on October 11,1930 to BruceColverLearn and Olive Hazel Savage.
Ralph spent his early years on the family farm, where he developed a lifelong love of growing and nurturing all living things, an interest in innovation, building and a respect for hard work.
Ralph graduated from the London Normal School and began his teaching career in a one room schoolhouse in Elgin County. He continued his education through course work and summer school, earning a Master of Education Degree from the University of Toronto.
Ralph married Judith Johnstone in 1955. In 1966, the family moved to Sudbury where together they raised five children. It was at this time that Ralph became a northerner, building a family camp in Killarney Provincial Park that would become a base for family and friends.
Ralph began with the Sudbury District School Board as an Inspector. He ended his career as Superintendent of Special Education. Ralph was instrumental in implementing programs for children with a wide variety of special needs.
Ralph retired to Midland in 1986 with his partner Karin Thwaits, where he helped raise four step children, enjoyed gardening, travelling and renovating their old house.
Ralph was a compassionate, generous and loving person. He possessed an incredible memory and an ability to know just how to help others. These gifts allowed him to have very close and meaningful relationships with all who knew him.
Ralph will be dearly missed by his loving partner of 35 years, Karin Thwaits. He is survived by his children: John Learn (Darlene), Mary Scott (Jeff), David Learn (Kim), Joy Beeley, Peter Learn (Chantelle), David Thwaits (Lynette), Simon Thwaits (Jessie), Anna Moody (Tyler) and Thomas Thwaits (Corrine). Ralph also leaves behind twenty four beloved grandchildren and four dear great-grandchildren.
Ralph is predeceased by his parents Bruce and Olive, his older brother Bill, his first wife and friend Judith, his 2 infant daughters Ruth Ann and Margaret Louise, and son-in-law Ken Beeley
Sincere thanks to the nurses and doctors at GBGH for their care of Ralph in his last week. Ralph donated his body to the University of WesternOntario:Department of Anatomy, a legacy begun by his parents. The family will hold a private Celebration of Life.
Donations in Ralph’s memory can be made to: St. John’s Anglican Church, 20 Yonge St . N.ElmvaleL0L 1P0or Friends of Killarney Park.
Send a Condolence
Thank you, your condolence will be passed on to the family. To send another condolence, please refresh the page.
Please join us for our
"Being Prepared Made Simple"
Community Education Seminar