Ralph W. Fortna 84, retired Cocalico teacher, part-time handyman, former pastor

By on February 19, 2014

Ralph W. Fortna

Ralph W. Fortna

Ralph W. Fortna, 84, of Lititz, passed away Thursday, Feb. 13, 2014 at Lancaster General Hospital.

Born on August 17, 1929 in Jonestown, he was the son of the late John H. and Tillie R. (Wentling) Fortna.

He graduated from Jonestown High School in 1947 and Lebanon Valley College in 1957.

Ralph was a member of the Lititz Church of the Brethren, and retired from teaching in the Cocalico School District in 1983. He also worked for Hess Eggs in Ephrata and Wickes Lumber, and was a part-time handyman.

He was a former pastor of the Evangelical United Brethren Church serving at Chambers Hill and Ebenezer Churches in Harrisburg; Stoverdale and Shopes Churches, Hummelstown; Zion Church in Aristes and Mount Pisgah Church, Philadelphia.

Ralph is survived by his wife of 63 years: Louella (Weaver) Fortna, whom he married on Aug. 20, 1950; one daughter: Lillian Mae DeHart, wife of Peter of Middletown; seven sons: Edward Fortna, Akron; Harold Fortna, husband of Joanna, Bradford, Mass.; Ronald Fortna, husband of Sabrina, Joshua Tree, Calif.; Dennis Fortna, St. Louis, Mo.; Bernard Fortna, husband of Joyce, Hollidaysburg; Andrew Fortna, husband of Jane Dudley, Pittsburgh and John Fortna, husband of Debbie, Canonsburg; 25 grandchildren; eight great-grandchildren; and three brothers: Alfred, Kenneth and Donald Fortna. He was predeceased by one son: Theodore P. Fortna and one brother: Edward Fortna.

A funeral service was held in the Chapel at Brethren Village, Lancaster, Feb. 18 with Rev. Robert Kettering presiding. Burial will be at the convenience of the family.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Lititz Church of the Brethren, 300 W. Orange St., Lititz, PA 17543; Brethren Village, 3001 Lititz Pike, Lancaster, PA 17606; or to American Diabetes Association, 301 Chestnut St., Ste. 101, Harrisburg, PA 17101.

To place a condolence online, visit snyderfuneralhome.com.

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