Dr. James F. Ransdell, 85, passed away in the morning, after breakfast, on Friday, April 20, 2012, at Courtyard HealthCare Center in Davis. He was born in Paris, Mo., in Monroe County, the youngest of three boys. His mother, Mary Ione Ransdell, was a school teacher, and his father, Thomas Mackin Ransdell, was a farmer.
He was married to Wanda Lee Armistead on June 12, 1949, and received his doctorate of medicine in 1955. He finished his residency in pathology, as assistant chief, in the pathology department at Oakland Naval Hospital in California in 1960.
An avid flyer, he served in the Civil Air patrol for the Sacramento area. After several years as a pathologist for Sutter Community Hospitals, he felt the calling of his youth, and bought the Sackett Apricot farm along Putah Creek, outside of Winters.
Never one to do things by halves, in 1969, he partnered in a Clinical & Forensic practice in Davis. By then Dr. Fred and Wanda had five children: Trinka, Faye, Fred, Tom and Sam, who experienced a bit of culture shock moving from air-conditioned suburbia to an isolated, woodstove-heated farmhouse at the end of a two-mile dirt road.
During the farm years, Fred and Wanda nurtured and raised kids, apricots, navel oranges, horses, dogs, cats and hippies. Although a practicing pathologist for 40 years, he had a longtime interest in nutrition, acupuncture and alternative medicine in general. Well known for his erudition on these subjects, he enjoyed talking with friends and colleagues with similar interests, an avocation he pursued in retirement.
He was also active in the local music community, participating in the Circle Of Singers, and serving as music director of the Pioneer Presbyterian Church. He was a founding member of the Winters Healthcare Foundation, and an active board member. Until his illness, he served as president of the Winters Senior Citizens organization.
He is survived by his wife, Marie Epling; daughters Trinka and Faye; sons Fred, Tom and Sam; nine grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Wanda Lee Ransdell; elder brothers, Tom and Sam Ransdell; father, Thomas Macklin Ransdell, and mother, Mary Ione Ransdell.
A celebration of his life is planned for 1 p.m. Saturday, May 19, 2012, at the Pioneer Presbyterian Church on 205 Russell St. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his honor to Yolo Hospice, PO Box 1014, 95617.
Born: August 20, 1926
Death: April 20, 2012
Marie Epling, Spouse
Trinka and Faye, Daughters
Tom and Sam, Dons
Nine Grandchildren and Seven Great Grandchildren
Wanda Lee Ransdell, Spouse
Tom and Sam Ransdell, Brothers
Thomas Macklin Ransdell, Father
Mary Ione Ransdell, Mother
May 19, 2012, 1:00
Pioneer Presbyterian Church
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Memorial donations may be made to:
Yolo Hospice; P.O. Box 1014; Davis, CA 95617