Cover photo for Ray Zempel's Obituary
Ray Zempel Profile Photo
1939 Ray 2024

Ray Zempel

June 23, 1939 — March 9, 2024

Ray “Buck” Zempel, 84, of Mandan, died March 9, 2024, at Sanford Health, Bismarck.

A funeral service will be held at 10 AM on Friday, March 15, 2024, at Almont Lutheran Church, Almont, ND, with Rev. Bill Dodd officiating. Burial will be at Sims Cemetery in Almont.  Cremation has taken place and the family will greet friends one hour prior to the service at the church on Friday.

Ray was born in the back of The Tavis Hotel & Café in Almont, ND, on June 23, 1939, to Frederick and Judith (Olson) Zempel.   Raised and educated in Almont, he graduated from Almont High School in 1957 and then worked for the ND Highway Department for six years.  In 1960, Ray married Bonnie Gustafson in Almont and they were blessed with a son, Marty, in 1961.  In 1963, Ray began his career with Northern Improvement, retiring in 2010, after 47 years with the company.

Known as “Buck” to his family and friends, he was the most giving and loving man you could ever meet, considering he was a stubborn Norwegian.  His most cherished times were spent with family and friends, whether they were fishing, hunting, or sitting around a fire telling stories.  Once in awhile, he’d even end up wearing lipstick and nail polish applied lovingly by his granddaughter.  Buck loved playing basketball with his grandson and telling tall tales to his great grandson.  

Blessed to have shared in his life is his son and daughter-in-law, Marty & Faye (Johnson) Zempel; granddaughter, Desaree Zempel (fiancé Kyle Rosenau); grandson, Cody Zempel; great grandson, Cash; brother, Aaron (Sharon Milas) Zempel; very special friend, Laurel Moser; and the extended Zempel and Gustafson families. As well as the Moser, Nelson, Kienzle, and Woodworth families that adopted him later in life which he cherished.

Buck was preceded in death by his wife, Bonnie, in 2001; his parents; and sisters, Ardys (John A.) Schafer and Ramona (Jeff) Roper.

He will forever be in the hearts and minds of all who loved him for he has touched us all.  

 Memorials are preferred to the Make a Wish Foundation. 

 


 

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Visitation

Friday, March 15, 2024

9:00 - 10:00 am (Central time)

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Friday, March 15, 2024

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Burial

Friday, March 15, 2024

11:00am - 12:00 pm (Central time)

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