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John Ratzlaff

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John Ratzlaff died Dec. 31, 2023, at the age of 96. He was a man who made time for others. He taught at the Mennonite Educational Institute, Abbotsford, B.C., from 1954 to 1988. As a teacher, he loved taking students on hikes and field trips, leading choirs, and making time for persons around him. The students he taught in his later years were the children of many of his former students. Many students have remarked on the lasting impression he made on their lives. After his retirement, he and his wife Helen spent time in China teaching English to speakers of other languages until the revolution in 1989 cut short their stay. John then spent time teaching inmates in the local prisons till he lost his eyesight in 2001. John and Helen’s house was always open, and students and visitors were always welcome. He always had time for his grandchildren and great-grandchildren and took a great interest in their aspirations and achievements even in his last days. While his family is saddened by their loss, they know their dad had a very full and joyful life and many happy and adventurous years with Helen. John leaves behind Johnathan (Lorraine) Ratzlaff, David (Ruth) Ratzlaff, Mitzi Payie, Carol (Terry) Sawatsky; many grandchildren; and many, many great grandchildren.

  • Birth: April 23, 1927
  • Death: December 31, 2023
  • Family:
    children Johnathan (Lorraine), David (Ruth), Mitzi Payie, Carol (Terry) Sawatsky; grandchildren; great-grandchildren
  • Church:
    Highland, Abbotsford, B.C.