ST. JOHN — Vernon “Sonny” Ralston, 77, of Saint John, Kan. formerly of Liberal, passed away on Saturday, March 28, 2020 in Saint John, Kan. He was born on Dec. 24, 1942 to Vernon and Wanda (Hague) Ralston in Liberal, Kan.
On Aug. 11, 1961 he married Karolyn Bryan at Liberal, Kan.; she preceded him in death on Nov. 29, 2006.
Sonny was a graduate of Liberal High School; class of 1961. He then obtained his Associates Degree in Criminal Justice through Seward County Community College; class of 1982. Sonny began his Law Enforcement career with Liberal Police Department in 1963 where he retired as a Captain in 1996. He moved to Kiowa, Kan. where he served as the Police Chief from 1996-2000. Sonny then went to St. John, Kan. where he also served as the Police Chief from 2000-2010; officially retiring after 48 years in law enforcement. Sonny enjoyed woodworking and carpentry. He also loved to fish and spend time with his grandchildren and great grandchildren. He was a member of Knights of Columbus, Kansas Peace Officers Association and the FBI NA Association. He was a graduate of the Kansas Law Enforcement Training Center and the FBI National Academy; class of 1983. Sonny also served as a board member on the Kansas Law Enforcement Training Commission. He was a member of the St. John Catholic Church.
Sonny is survived by two sons, Kelly Ralston and wife Cheryl of Great Bend, Kan. and John Ralston and wife Karen of Liberal, Kan.; sister, Marilyn Gabbard of Canal Fulton, Ohio; eight grandchildren, Zachary Ralston and wife Kim of Wamego, Kan., Cortnea Wilson and husband Kip of Great Bend, Kan., Kelby Ralston of Great Bend, Kan., Ryan Ralston and wife Kristi of Madison, Wisc., Chad Ralston of Liberal, Kan., Trevor Ralston of Charlottesville, Va., Zane Ralston of Overland Park, Kan., and Kaitlyn Ralston of Liberal, Kan.; five great grandchildren, Maverick, Lincoln, Eli, Reese, and Koy. He was preceded in death by his parents; son, Brian Ralston; brother, Robert Ralston, sister, Beverly Olson; and great granddaughter, Remy Jane Smith Ralston.
A Private Family Inurnment will take place in the Liberal City Cemetery. A public Memorial Service will be announced at a later date. Friends may send condolences to the family through Sonny’s tribute web page at www.millermortuary.net.
Funeral arrangements provided by
908 N Lincoln Avenue
Liberal, KS 67901
Great Bend (Kan.) Tribune, April 1, 2020