Ronald E. Wheat
Ron Wheat was born March 3, 1943, on his father’s birthday. Eleven days later his father left Port Hueneme, California serving with the Construction Battalion of the U.S. Navy Seabees to Okinawa, Japan. Love and respect of country was instilled in Ron from his earliest moments of life.
Ron spent his elementary school years in California, and after several moves for his father’s career with Farmers Insurance, Ron ended up in Kansas City for his junior high and high school years.
He went to Shawnee Mission High School in Kansas City where he met his wife-to-be, Mary. He was a high school baseball south-paw pitcher and was scouted by minor league professionals.
After completing high school he received a baseball scholarship from Pepperdine University where he attended his freshman year. But, deciding that a degree in business and his love for Mary were more important to him, he became a University of Kansas Jayhawk along with Mary. He and Mary married his junior year in college and they shared 57 wonderful years of marriage.
After graduating college in 1965, they moved to Los Angeles where they had two children, Rob and Kathryn. His family became the center of his life and inspired him to advance in his career with Farmers Insurance like his father. He continued to work for Farmers Insurance for the next 43 years. Ron also served as a member of the California National Guard.
Ron was a district manager with Farmers Insurance where his role was to recruit, hire and train agents to establish their own agency. He was proud of helping them begin their business and received many awards and honors recognizing his achievements.
Ron was always present and offering help. He served as president of his children’s private school board and was a contributing choir member in several of his Presbyterian church homes. He was a Mason and a Shriner and was president of the High Twelve Club through his Masonic association. Ron also was a member of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library, The Santa Barbara Navy League and the Jonathon Club of Los Angeles.
While Ron loved cool cars, current events, cold ocean breezes and warm Santa Ana winds, he mostly loved traveling! Documenting and sharing his travels with his photography was a favorite hobby. When his children were young, he purchased an airstream trailer and a boat and hit the road. Destinations included the coast of California, Victoria, Canada, and much of the mid-west to visit family. Family travels also included memories of Mexico, the Caribbean Islands and Europe. But his favorite travel destinations were with Mary to South Africa, China and The Holy Land.
After retiring, his true enjoyment was spending time with his family and his four adoring grandchildren, Emma and Ainsley Janes and Christopher and Nicholas Wheat. Nothing brought him more joy than attending his grandchildren’s events.
Retirement also brought him a move to Dallas, Texas in 2011. He volunteered with the American Red Cross, helping widows of veterans understand their benefits. He also volunteered with his church to help deliver communion to those unable to leave their homes to attend worship service. His new life in Dallas additionally provided a favorite past time of sampling local bar-b-que joints, as well as lots of day trips with Mary to explore their new home state of Texas.
Ron was selfless. He was a patriot. He was kind. Ron never held a grudge or fostered conflict with anyone. He was the model of grace and forgiveness – a true gentlemen, husband and father. He is survived by his wife Mary Louise Wheat, his children Robert Paul Wheat (Newport Beach, CA) and Kathryn Wheat Janes (Dallas, TX), daughter-in-law Kelly Ann Wheat, son-in-law Matthew Stephen Janes, and grandchildren Christopher William Wheat (16), Nicholas Paul Wheat (10), Emma Louise Janes (20) and Ainsley Rose Janes (17). He was preceded in death by his parents Robert Preston Wheat and Margorie Jean Wheat and brother Howard Dennis Wheat.
Ron will be greatly missed by his family and all who knew him.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests any donations be made to Wounded Warrior Family Assistance, in honor of Ron Wheat.
Online donations can be made at https://www.wwfs.org/donate/, or checks can be sent to; WWFS, 11218 John Galt Blvd Ste 103, Omaha, NE 68137.
For more information on Wounded Warrior Family Assistance, visit: https://www.wwfs.org/ #news
It was such a nice pleasure to meet you, and what you had planned for my father just took my breath away. It was so special to hear you tell us how he would just come over to talk with you. I think it brought him much comfort. Tha you for putting that Air Force article of him on your website. I am going to have a replica made of the painting of his plane to give you. Thank you again for all you have done to honor our dad. Love, The Gillilands
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