On Tuesday, May 2nd, Gerald Leo Ratigan beloved father and grandfather, passed away at the age of 92.

Gerald Leo Ratigan was born Christmas day 1930 in Omaha, Nebraska, to Clare and Leo Ratigan.   Gerald's father was the seventh son of a seventh son, an Irish immigrant who had come to seek a better life.  Jerry, as he was always known, worked for Sears and Glidden Paint in Omaha before marrying the love of his life, Molly Malone in 1955.  They had three children Kathleen, Eileen, and Patrick. Jerry supported his growing family by operating Color Decorating, a painting and decorating company, following in his father's footsteps as an artist and designer.  Meanwhile, he served in the Army National Guard for 11 years and achieved the rank of Sergeant First Class.

 In 1969 he moved to Hartford, Iowa and started Carlisle Manufacturing, a design, decorating and supply company that served the needs of churches. In 1990 he joined forces with his son Pat Ratigan and his wife Mary and purchased Schottler Manufacturing in Beatrice, Ne, re-branding the company as Ratigan Schottler Manufacturing.  Together, the father and son team with the able Molly by their side built a successful and highly regarded church and courtroom furniture manufacturing company, With his artistic, design and building skills, Jerry decorated churches and statuary across the Midwest, leaving a legacy of timeless beauty.

Jerry lived his life with both great passion and dedication. He was a self-made man who had concern for the working man and a tremendous sense of fairness.  He worked and played with equal energy. In 1970, Jerry bought a 20 acre island in Minnesota where for years he had vacationed, and remodeled and improved the old log cabin that had been abandoned there.  He later expanded it designing and building it with Molly's help.  Though it was forged with tremendous effort, that cabin and island have brought him and his entire family immeasurable joy, 

Jerry was a faithful Catholic, loving son, brother, husband, father, and grandfather. He was a man of many talents: Artist, designer, inventor, poet, wordsmith, photographer, builder, avid hunter, and fisherman. He invented words and phrases, usually hilarious, to describe what he saw. He loved parties and built his house around making it a great place for family gatherings.  He was funny, He was a great man and will be greatly missed.

Gerald was proceeded in death by his parents, daughter Eileen, brothers Tom and Frank, and his loving wife, Molly.  He is survived by his daughter Kate Ratigan , and husband,Ray Arter, their children Clare and Liam, and his son Patrick Ratigan, and wife Mary, and their children Ryan Ratigan, Devin Ratigan and Cara Rolofson and husband Brett Rolofson, and their children. 

Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10:00 AM Saturday, May 6, 2023, at the St. Joseph Catholic Church in Beatrice with Father Leo Kosch officiating. The services will be recorded then uploaded on the funeral home website at a later time. Interment will be at the St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery with full military honors provided the Nebraska Army National Guard, Bitting-Norman Post #27, American Legion, and the Legion Riders. An Irish Celebration of Life will be held following the church reception at The Black Crow, 405 Court Street in Beatrice. The body will lie in state Friday from noon-8:00 PM at the Griffiths-Hovendick Chapel in Beatrice with the family greeting friends from 4-6:00 PM, and in state at the church after 9:00 AM on Saturday. The Rosary will be held at 9:30 AM Saturday at the church. A memorial has been established to the family’s choice for future designation with the funeral home in charge. Additional service details, video tributes and services, or memories may be found at www.ghchapel.com.

These services have been entrusted to the Griffiths-Hovendick Chapel in Beatrice.