James B. Ricke, son of Roman and Eunice (Studer) Ricke, was born January 22, 1944, in Bancroft, IA. He attended St. John's School in Bancroft where he graduated in 1962. After graduating, he joined the Army and served overseas as a mechanic. He was honorably discharged from the service on September 23, 1965, and returned to Bancroft where he began his farming career.
On August 6th, 1966, he was united in marriage to Helen Johnson at St. John's Catholic Church in Bancroft. They moved to the farm west of Bancroft where they lived together for 53 years. On March 23, 1968, Jim began working at the new Ralston Purina Feed Store in Bancroft as the mill man. In 1976, he purchased the business in partnership with Roger Thompson, and it became known as J & R Feed & Farm Supply. In 1984, Jim became the sole owner and operated the business alongside his son, Brian. The two continued to work side by side until the mill closed in 1995.
Jim was an avid farmer and enjoyed working the land and raising livestock. His love for horses introduced him to the Seneca Saddle Club, and he remained a member of the club for many years. Jim always talked about the fun times he had with his Saddle Club friends, especially during horse shows and trail rides. Jim's greatest joy was spending time with his family and friends, whether that be on fishing trips, going to car shows, or attending auctions. Some of his favorite memories were trips to Wisconsin and Canada where he got to spend time with and tell stories to all of his beloved grandchildren.
Jim was a devout Catholic and his faith was very important to him. He instilled those values into his family of nine children who relied on his many prayers throughout the years. Jim was a member of St. John Catholic Church in Bancroft and the American Legion Post 0377. Jim died Sunday, June 30, 2019 at his home in Bancroft.
Left to cherish his memory are wife Helen, his children Deb (Mike) Doocy of Bancroft, IA and their children Drew, Marissa, and Tanner; Sheila (Mike) Rolling of Waseca, MN and their children Mikayla, Nick, and Jackson; Larry Ricke of Fenton, IA and his children Tyler (Megan) Heetland, Jordan, Spencer, and Hunter; daughter-in-law Sheila (Joe) Larson of Thompson, IA and their children Alysha (Ryan) Patterson, Caleb Ricke and Abigail Larson; Mike (Myra) Ricke of Madison, SD and their children Jacob, Amanda, Jonathan, and Nathan; Jerry (Amber) Ricke of Catossa, OK and their children Chase, Chloe, Caden, Carter, and Claire; Heather Preston of Zumbrota, MN and her children Conner, Sydney, and Adisyn; Sandy (John) Majerus of Farmington, MN and their children Jack, Weston, and Liam; Tom (Paula) Ricke of Hayfield, MN and their children Emmett and Aloaha; and a great granddaughter Harper Heetland. He is also survived by his sisters Ruthie Leonelli of Cannon Beach, OR and Ethel Ingalls of Fort Dodge, IA; and a brother Don Ricke of Lone Rock, IA. Jim was preceded in death by his son Brian on March 26, 2000; his parents (Roman and Eunice); his sister Mary Olberding; and an infant brother Steven.
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Helen and the entire Ricke family,
I’m so very sorry to learn of the loss of Jim. My heart goes out to each of you. You have my deepest sympathy. Please know you will be in my thoughts and prayers. May the love you share bring you comfort in your sorrow.
Love, Sara Ulses Brinker
(Grade school classmate of Sandy)
Condolences to the whole Ricke family from Philip Hamilton family.
I remember my boys challenging me and my older mare to the poles and barrels in open class at the Kossuth County Fair. I thought i had knocked down a pole....or should I say my horse's tail....and I can still hear Jim's voice cheering for me over the loud speaker.....bring her home Lori.....the pole stayed up....bring her home.
Jim was a great mentor to so many 4-H kids....and we parents. He will be missed greatly. My heart and prayers are with you all.
Sincere condolences to Jim’s family and friends. Though I left the farm many years ago and don’t know you well, I do know that the Ricke’s were always the best of neighbors to my Dad.
Helen and family, Our hearts are saddened. Jim was our friend. Our prayers uphold each one of you as you walk this journey of loss and sadness. May you feel God's arms around you, day by day. Our love, Rich and Carol Olson of Sioux Falls, SD
My condolences to the whole huge Ricke family.
Helen and family. My deepest sympathy on your loss. I have many great memories of going to the feed mill with dad. Jim was always so kind to the little girl who always was tagging along with her dad. May your memories bring you happiness and peace. Julie (Wesselmann) Theisen
Helen. So sorry for your loss. Love you.... Cousin Russ Schneider
All of Sandy's colleagues at the University of Minnesota Foundation are deeply saddened to learn of your family's loss. We wish you strength and serenity, and the comfort of your family's love.
Helen and family, So so sorry for your loss. I always enjoyed our visits. His smile could light up a room. Don remembers many good times at the feed mill. May your many memories help you through this time and in the days ahead. He will be missed by so many. Prayers.
Helen and family, so sorry for your loss. You have my deepest sympathies.
Helen and the entire Ricke Family,
My deepest sympathy on the loss of your husband/father/grandfather. I have some of the best childhood memories because of the friendship my parents had with all of the Bancroft crew. Will always cherish them - You guys are special people! My thoughts and prayers are with you all during this difficult time!
With My Deepest Sympathy,
Tonya (Schiltz) Metz
So sorry to read this. My thoughts and prayers are with you. May your many memories bring you comfort
My heart goes out to the entire Ricke family, so very sorry for your loss.
Helen and Family,
With a heavy heart, and not know how to say it! I always enjoyed visiting with Jim! He always had a smart a$# remark! I think him and Dad made up for lost time during Mass instead of doing what they were suppose to be doing! Know my ♡ goes out to you and the family! Deepest Sympathy!
Helen and family. was shocked to hear of your loss of Jim. May he rest in peace. Jim & Janice Schumacher
Helen and family will keep you all in our prayers .
Kenny and Mary Ann Studer
Helen and Family...I am so very sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers go out to you in this difficult time.
Helen and family. So sorry to hear of Jims passing. You are all in my thoughts and prayers. Will miss seeing you every month. God bless.
Helen and the entire Ricke family, our thoughts and prayers are with all of you right now. Remember the days of playing cards and staying up all night and playing games while the kids slept in the house. He will be missed but is now in Gods hands. RIP Jim
Helen Deb and your family. So sorry for your significant loss. Prayers for peace that passes understanding at this difficult time.
Helen and family,we are SO sorry for your loss! Jim was such a kind man, always a chuckle, keep all the great memories close in your hearts! Prayers to you all 🙏💔
Helen and family. Thoughts and prayers to all during this difficult time.
Helen and family , Thinking of you all at this difficult time . My prayers are with you all. Remembering all the God times you had will carry you thru . 💔💔💔
Helen and family - its terrible to hear about your loss and we express our sincere sympathy to you and your family. Thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time. Rick June and family
Helen and family, our hearts hurt for all of you and so deeply sorry for your loss. Jim was a kind and thoughtful man and will be missed by many. Keep your memories alive with tears and laughter, I know there were a lot of good times in your family. Prayers and thoughts to all of you at this time and in the coming days. I bet Brian is waiting to welcome Dad into heaven. Love and hugs to all of you .
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