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Ron Banks, age 73, of Cannon Falls, died on Saturday, October 24, 2020 at his home.
Ronald George Banks was born on Jan. 9, 1947, in Red Wing, the son of Eldridge and Doris (Rapp) Banks. He grew up in Cannon Falls, graduating from Cannon Falls High School in 1965. Following high school, Ron moved to Los Angeles where he attended the California Lutheran Bible School. It was here that he met Marilyn Westberg and the two were married On Oct. 8, 1971 at Redeemer Lutheran Church in Fridley. Ron returned to the upper Midwest and attended NDSU where he played football and was active in various intervarsity activities. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Ag. Education. Ron was the Youth Director at Redeemer Lutheran Church for approximately 3 years before moving to the family farm. He farmed and obtained a certificate in Special Education. He taught Special Ed. At Cannon Falls High School where he also coached boy’s and girls’ basketball, was an assistant football coach, and the JV baseball coach. In 2019 he was inducted into the Cannon Falls High School Hall of Fame.
He was an active member of Our Saviour’s Evangelical Lutheran Church where he served on the church board and was a song leader. He enjoyed singing for weddings and funerals and had a strong clear voice. Ron was also known as a horseman. He was a member and past president of the Minnesota Harness Racing Assn. He trained and raced Standardbred Horses, and for many years he announced at the races across the Midwest. He assisted in getting a parimutual harness track, Running Aces, going in Forest Lake. He was inducted in 2018, in the Minnesota Harness Racing Hall of Fame. Other favorite pastimes were going to his grandkid’s sports, playing games such as 500 and dominoes, and doing the PA announcing for basketball games,
Survivors include his wife Marilyn, children Kerry (Dawn) Banks, Candice (McLanahan) Stevens, and Mitchell (Rebecca) Banks; grandchildren Isaac, Marcus, and Dylan Banks, John and Ethan Stevens, and Delanie and Jackson Roland. Other survivors are his sister Mary Banitt, brothers Larry (Susan) Banks, DuWayne Banks, Craig Banks, and Kevin Banks; and sisters Karen (Troy) Millar and Shayla (Brian) Anfinson; as well as many nieces and nephews. Ron was preceded in death by his parents, his sister Judy (Eugene) Ryan, brother Kerry, brother Timothy, sister Sylvia Banks, sister Kay Tolvay, brother-in law August Banitt, sister-in-law Evelyn (John) Schroeder, brother-in-law Robert Wilderman, and brother-in-law Shirzad Aghazadeh; as well as parents-in-law Robert and Bessy Westberg.
Visitation will be Fri. Oct. 30 from 4-7:00 pm at Lundberg Funeral Home, 5839 Highway 19 Blvd, Cannon Falls, 55009. Memorial services will be held at 11:00 am Sat. Oct. 31 at Our Saviour’s Evangelical Lutheran Church, 30370 Hardwood Way, Cannon Falls, MN 55009. Masks and social distancing will be required at both.
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