Ray Scherschligt

Mitchell

Ray Scherschligt, 94, of Mitchell and formerly of Alpena, died on Thursday, Oct. 1, 2020, at Avera Brady Health and Rehab in Mitchell. 

His Mass of Christian Burial was on Wednesday, Oct. 7, at St. Wilfrid Catholic Church in Woonsocket with burial at Restlawn Memory Gardens Mausoleum in Huron. Visitation was on Tuesday, Oct. 6, at St. Wilfrid Church with a prayer service.

Ray Scherschligt was born on Dec. 21, 1925, in Utica, to John and Otillia (Hladky) Scherschligt.  He attended various country schools and graduated from Lesterville High School in 1943. 

Ray served in the 25th Division of the U.S. Army from April 1945 until December 1946 and was stationed in Occupied Japan. He attended the University of South Dakota and in 1948 was signed to play professional baseball with the Brooklyn Dodgers Farm System in Ponca City, Okla. He returned to Lesterville to manage and play on the Broncs amateur baseball team that went on to win the State Championship in 1950. 

Ray moved to Alpena in the spring of 1951 and married Mary Jane Pekas on June 7, 1951, in Lesterville. He was employed at the Alpena Co-op Creamery until 1958 and then managed the Alpena Co-op Oil Co. for 31 years, retiring in 1989.  Ray was a member of the Alpena Volunteer Fire Department and served 13 years on the school board, six years on the Board of the SD Petroleum Marketers, and 32 years on the Sanborn Telephone Cooperative Board. Ray was a member of the Owen Kunze American Legion Post 116 for over 66 years, holding the offices of Commander, Finance Officer, and Adjutant.  

He was also a member of the VFW Post 5548 in Wessington Springs.  Ray played amateur baseball for 40 years and was lucky enough to play his last year with his son, Mark.  Ray was voted into the South Dakota Baseball Hall of Fame in 1988 and was elected District 3 Baseball Commissioner in 1991. He was named South Dakota Amateur Baseball Man of the Year in 1998. In addition to baseball, Ray was an avid golfer and bowler and was inducted into the Huron Lifetime Member of Bowling Hall of Fame in 1999. He was a member of St. Wilfrid Catholic Church in Woonsocket, serving as lector and Eucharistic Minister until he moved to Mitchell in August of 2017, after the death of his wife. In 2019, Ray was inducted into the SD Cooperative Hall of Fame.  Ray and Mary Jane were married for 66 years.  They were faith-filled people who loved to dance, play cards, and enjoy life.

Grateful for sharing his life are his son, Mark (Karen) Scherschligt of Brooklyn Park, Minn.; daughter, Karen (Tim) Harrington, of Mitchell; five grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; brother, Art (Erla) Scherschligt; sister-in-law, Viola Scherschligt; and many nieces and nephews.

Ray was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Mary Jane in 2017; sister, Helen; brothers, John, Fred, and Lester; and nephews, Danny Zitka, Jeff Scherschligt, and Warren Scherschligt.

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