Ralph Hillard Kessel
Ralph H. Kessel
Ralph Hillard Kessel

December 18, 1942 - November 19, 2022
Born in Chicago, IL
Resided in Des Moines, Iowa
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Ralph Hillard Kessel passed away peacefully on Saturday, November 19th, 2022 at the age of 79 in Des Moines, Iowa. Services will be held at Jewish Woodland Cemetery on Monday, November 21st, 2022 at 11:00 AM.

Ralph was born in Chicago, Illinois on December 18th, 1942 to Nathan and Anne Kessel. He was adoring and loving son, father, husband, brother, cousin and friend. He was known for his compassion, his intelligence, and his wonderful sense of humor.

Ralph spent time after college as a professor, then moved to Iowa to complete his studies at the University of Iowa and start a family with his beloved wife Naomi, to whom he was married for nearly 40 years until her passing in 2016. He was dedicated to his entire extended family, including even his most distant cousins. His Jewish faith was tremendously important to him and he was an active member of the Temple B’Nai Jeshurun in Des Moines for many years.

He was preceded in death by his wife Naomi, and survived by his brother Art (Iris), daughter Becky (Joseph), and son Jonathan (Carrie).




Graveside Service
Woodland Cemetery
Woodland & MLK
Des Moines, IA US 50312
Monday, November 21, 2022
11:00 AM


Temple B'nai Jeshurun
5101 Grand Avenue
Des Moines, IA 50312
Kavanagh House
900 - 56th Street
Des Moines, IA US 50312