Ralph Back

Ralph Richard Back

1942 - 2024

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Obituary of Ralph Richard Back

Ralph Richard Back passed away peacefully on March 25, 2024, at age 81. Survived by his beloved daughter Rachael Ulrich Back, partner Marilyn Helen Ulrich and sister Bette Back Hoyt. In addition, he is survived by three nieces, two nephews and four grand nieces. Preceded in death by father Frank (Dick) Back, Mother Anne Back (nee Tipshus) and brothers Frank and Robert.

Ralph grew up in Muskegon Michigan where he developed a lifelong passion for trains and photography. He attended Wayne State University, graduating in 1967 with a math degree and then accepted a job as a systems analyst with The Boeing Company working in Huntsville, Alabama and Houston, Texas. He received recognition for his development of a specialized computer program which tracked electronic circuitry in the Command, Service and Lunar modules of the Apollo 9, 10 and 11 missions. His contribution to the Apollo 11 lunar landing success is noted in a document filed in the US Library of Congress.

He combined his love for trains and photography and became an accomplished train photographer, having many published photos and articles in books and train

magazines. For 25 years Ralph volunteered at the Minnesota Transportation Museum. He worked on the train crew out of Osceola WS, on the Safety and Training Commission and he maintained and published the timetable.

Celebration of life service is being planned for a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Minnesota Transportation Museum (transportationmuseum.org) an organization dear to his heart.

A Memorial Tree was planted for Ralph
We are deeply sorry for your loss ~ the staff at Cremation Society of Minnesota