Ralph Martin Cordell was born January 24, 1946 at Watertown, South Dakota, the son of Martin and Jessie (Gosmire) Cordell. He graduated from Watertown High School.
As a young man, Ralph worked for custom harvesters and farmers where he learned to drive trucks. When he turned 21, he was able to get a commercial license and began driving tractor trailers. He worked for a number of companies including Midwest Coast and Crete Trucking. Ralph married Caroline Brown on September 28, 1991 and they settled in Sioux Falls. Caroline rode with Ralph in the truck for many years.
He is survived by his wife, Caroline; two children, Carrie Cordell and Neil (Misty) Cordell; step-children, Sandy (Steve) Otto, Stewart Marshall and Richard Marshall; twelve grandchildren; eight siblings, Edward (Vicki) Cordell, John (Cathy) Cordell, Lucy (Larry) Hemiller, Paul Cordell (Joe Steiner), Stephen Cordell, Cecelia (Paul) Leiseth, Patricia (Monte) Kramer and Alvin (Sara) Cordell.
Ralph is preceded in death by his parents; a daughter, Deanne Teri Cordell; and his siblings, Andrew, Howard, Martin and Kathleen.