Monday, January 7, 2013

In memory: Frank Ralph Mckenzie

Frank Ralph Mckenzie was the 2nd of twelve children born to John and May Mckenzie.

Known by his 2nd name, Ralph was born on 21 July 1901 in Dundee. He married Ethel Winifred (Winnie) Doidge on 9 January 1934 at Acton Homes in the Bergville Area, South Africa. Winnie was born 20 March 1909 and died 29 Jan 1972. Three children were born, Arthur Graham, Alison May, Ruth Christine

Ralph was a farmer all his life. He inherited the farm “Glenluce” on the Waschbank Road, outside Dundee, and developed it into a well established enterprise. The farm consisted predominantly of maize and dairy. He was well-known in the local farming community as a man of stature and integrity.

Ralph was a local preacher at the Dundee Methodist Church. He delivered sermons of quality and his presentation was easy to follow and yet challenged the listener. He faithfully served the church throughout his life and was very popular amongst the congregants.

Ralph and Winnie had a special ability to make any visitors feel very welcome on the farm. Many Sunday Schools picnics were held at Glenluce, where youngsters spent the day playing on the haystack, participating in the races and climbing the Indumeni Mountain.

He exhibited amazing strength of character during the illness of subsequent death of his beloved Winnie. Keeping his own emotions in check, he lovingly encouraged and served her to the end. This was one precious aspect of his character which remains fresh in the memory of the writer, who was a young girl at the time.

He died 13 Nov 1989 and was buried in Dundee Cemetery.

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