In Loving Memory…

Brig. Gen. Ronald A. Hoppes, USA (Ret)

Brigadier General Ronald Alvin Hoppes, USA Retired, 81, of Sedalia, passed away on the morning of Thursday, January 2, 2020 at his home, surrounded by his family.

He was born August 15, 1938 in Parkerville, KS, the only child of Alvin Elmore and Vera Opal (Shaw) Hoppes.

On January 31, 1960 in Sedalia, he was united in marriage to Laura Lee (Young) and they would become the parents of four daughters.

Ronald was a 1956 graduate of Smith-Cotton High School. At age 17, he entered the United States Marine Corps and served for three years as a radar and missile technician. After the Marine Corps he enrolled in Central Missouri State University, where he received Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Aviation.

While in the Army National Guard, Ronald attended more than 15 training schools, including Officer Candidate School.  Through study and hard work, Ronald moved through the ranks to become Brigadier General.  He served as battalion commander for the Air Defense Program, as unit commander, artillery officer, artillery battalion commander and brigade commander of the 135th Field Artillery Brigade in Sedalia among others.  As assistant Adjutant General, Ronald was instrumental in establishing the Missouri National Guard Military Honors Program as well as funding for the current armory in Sedalia.  He retired in 1998, after 42 years and six months of service.  According to Ronald, the military was “…a way of life, and it’s not just a job.” He felt “driven by a greater purpose than just a paycheck.”

Outside of his military career, aviation was a clear passion of his. He could fly practically any non-commercial aircraft including helicopters. He shared his love of flying, teaching private lessons and classes at State Fair Community College. He and Laura also had an aerial photography business, which they called Via Alta Foto.

Ronald also had a love for music and even contemplated becoming a musician for a living. In high school, he had his own country swing band.

Other hobbies included fishing, bird hunting, raising bird dogs, horseback riding, studying military history, genealogy, taking family vacations, and enjoying the everchanging world of digital technology.  After retirement, Ronald and Laura enjoyed years of traveling. Through their travels, they made many close friends across the country.

Ronald was very much a family man. His family meant everything to him. He sacrificed career moves and endured extended work commutes in order to raise his family on the homestead he established with Laura and his parents; allowing his daughters to remain at the same school throughout their education.  He was blessed to have them settle their families near home and have the opportunity to watch his grandchildren grow up.

Ronald was kindhearted and very caring. He was a patriotic and honorable man, very committed to his country and career.

In addition to his wife of 59 years, Laura, survivors include three daughters, Angela DeHaven (Bob), Shawna Kratzer (Chuck Jr.), and Tammy Homan (Mark), all of Sedalia; six grandchildren, Tayler Kratzer (Sarah), Beau Kratzer (Avery), Annie Pulliam (Aleks), Lynnie DeHaven, Brendon Homan and Caden Homan; numerous cousins, nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents; and an infant daughter, Kimberly Kay Hoppes.

Funeral services will be held at 10:00 a.m. Thursday, January 9, 2020 at Heckart Funeral Home, with the Rev. Mr. Turf Martin, Ron’s cousin who was like a brother, and Rev. Bill Boatman officiating.

Casket bearers will be Colonel Don Carter, USA Retired, Colonel Bill Stucker, USA Retired, Lieutenant Colonel John Schrimpf, USA Retired, Lieutenant Colonel Jerry Welch, Brigadier General (MO) Dennis Shull, USA Retired, and Sergeant Major Ron Hellesvig, USA Retired, all comrades of Ron’s.

Honorary bearers will be Joe Bode, David Curry, Bill Fuller, Jim Fulwider, Turf Martin, Don Ressel, John Walch, Dale Yelton, and Drew Zink.

Burial will be in Highland Sacred Gardens, with full military honors by the United States Army National Guard.

The family will receive friends from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. Wednesday, January 8, 2020 at Heckart Funeral Home.

The family suggests memorial contributions to a charity near and dear to the donor’s heart.


  1. Harry Satterwhite

    Laura Lee,
    So very sorry for your loss, which is being shared by many. I guess we all are living on borrowed time, but it is difficult to let our friends and loved one go on without us. Remember there are still lots of us out there who will be there for you in your need.

  2. Thank you Mr. Hoppes for your service to our great country and may you rest in peace. Deepest condolences to the family of this American hero.

  3. Rene & Becky Dedrick

    So sorry for your alls loss!! I had the pleasure of serving with Ron in Sedalia!! He was a great inspiration for me in my military career. I know that he was a great leader, man and friend! He will be missed by all who had the pleasure of serving with him! May God continue to Bless you all!!

  4. Tammy, so sorry about your dad. I am so glad that you had many years with him. Many memories to cling to. “Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes in the morning” Ps 30:5

  5. CSM William “Skip” & Eva Rich

    We have wonderful memories of General Hoppes, many military events and Skip served with him over many years. Lots of great stories. The family has our deepest sympathy and love.

  6. So sorry for your loss. Sending prayers for comfort during this time. Brian and Sherry Nulsen & family

  7. CSM (Ret) Charles M, Blair

    So sorry for your loss. I had the honor of serving with BG Hoppes as his CSM of 135 FA Bde, in Sedalia, MO. In the 26 years I served as a 1SG and CSM BG Hoppes was the best commander I had to show his concern for the soldiers and doing it in a quiet way that they never knew. He. taught me how to be a better CSM. He would always take the time to listen to me when I needed him to help with the welfare of soldiers. He was truly a soldier’s commander. I am blessed and thankful for the time I got to spend with BG Hoppes. I’m sure he will be missed by all who knew him.

  8. I am so sorry for your loss. Praying for you and your family during this difficult time.

  9. Patricia McMullin

    Laura and family,
    With our thoughts and prayers.
    Don and Pat (Lane) McMullin

  10. Margaret G Heffernan

    Shawna, I am so sorry to hear about your dad. Your family is in my thoughts and prayers. God Speed Brig. General and thank you for your service. Tom and Peggy Heffernan

  11. Dear Laura and family, I’m so sorry to hear of Ron’s passing. His career and life were impressive. He was so kind and loving.
    Sending prayers and love.

  12. Peggy Neidholdt Swearngin

    Laura lee,
    So sorry for your loss. Thinking of you and your family and have you in my prayers.

  13. So sorry to learn of your loved one’s passing.

  14. Bob, Melissa, Emma, and Nick Slaughter

    Prayers for peace to your family! I am so sorry for your loss!

  15. John and Edie Knox

    We’re so sorry for your loss! Hugs and prayers to you and your family!

  16. Ed & Emily Slocum

    Emily and I reach over the miles and many years to offer our condolences for Ron’s passing . We pray for your peace. I remember Ron as a wonderful man, devoted patriot and fellow warrior. I am proud to have served with him.
    CSM Ed Slocum, US Army (Retired)

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