Ronald Kenneth Cressman, Danville, died on Oct. 17, 2021, a day after his 39th wedding anniversary.
DANVILLE, PA ~ Ronald Kenneth Cressman, of Danville, died on October 17, 2021, a day after his 39th wedding anniversary, at the age of 70 after battling cancer for over a year. His final days were spent at home surrounded by his wife, Denise, and sons, Brian and C.J..
One of seven siblings, Ron was born in Lansdale, Pennsylvania on February 15, 1951. He was the son of the late Joseph Cressman and Maud Cressman Kerr. In his twenties, Ron lived a life of adventure—spending his time driving fast cars, traveling the world, and going to concerts. Then, on October 16, 1982, he signed up for life’s biggest adventure when he married his wife, Denise. Ron and Denise had three sons, Brian, Eric, and C.J.. His marriage would turn out to be an inflection point in his life. Ron went from exploring the world to, as he would admit, “being along for the ride”; and from expensive toys to providing for his family.
Ron worked in the tractor trailer industry for over 50 years including for the 29 years of his career in the engineering department at Strick and then Great Dane Trailers outside Washingtonville before retiring in 2019. Many will remember Ron for his sense of humor and proclivity for four-letter words. These two things joined together in his nightly routine after work for decades following dinner: smoking cigarettes and drinking warm Busch beer by the back door while talking about his day. Ron wasn’t a man of many words, but you could usually count on some four-letter words coupled with a funny story from his day or some sort of funny joke, which made him an attraction of sorts to his sons’ friends when they would visit the house.
Despite a perhaps gruff exterior to outsiders at times, Ron was known as very warm and intensely caring by those close to him. He cared about his family more than anything and personally sacrificed for his family’s happiness throughout his life. Ron would do anything to help those he cared about. As the cancer spread and his body betrayed him, weakened and in pain, the gruff exterior disappeared—although the cussing and joking certainly remained. In the many days spent at his bedside throughout the emotional journey as the cancer spread, Ron and his family were able to express their love and care for each other in new ways. In that way, this torturous journey has been a gift.
Simply put, Ron was a good man, fundamentally and to his core. He was honest, humble, generous, and caring. Ultimately, his death was the peaceful release he deserved to the pain and suffering he didn’t deserve. His life was truly a blessing to his family. The sorrow and pain in their hearts from his passing is immense, but they take solace in knowing Ron will rest easy knowing he raised his sons to be men like him—cussing and joking, perhaps gruff to outsiders; but also honest, kind, and fiercely caring, willing to do anything to help their friends and family.
Ron was preceded in death by his son, Eric James Cressman, who was his “father’s son” in every way. After 18 long years Ron and Eric are together again. Ron was also preceded in death by his parents, Joe, and Maud; his brothers, Joseph Cressman, Robert Freeman, and James Swartz; a niece, Jodie Cressman; a nephew, Evan Cressman; and numerous other relatives. He is survived by his wife, Denise; sons Brian of Erie, PA, and C.J. also of Danville; and numerous other relatives.
Relatives and friends are invited to attend a funeral mass at St. Joseph’s Church in Danville on Saturday, October 30, 2021, at 11:00 AM with Father Timothy D. Marcoe officiating. Burial will follow in the parish cemetery. Prior to the mass, visitation will be held adjacent to the church in St. Hubert’s Hall from 9:00 AM to 10:45 AM. Following burial, a luncheon will be held in the basement of St. Hubert’s.
The family will provide flowers. In lieu of flowers, do what Ron would have done: drink a beer, tell a dirty joke, and love your family as hard as possible. Memorial contributions in Ron’s memory may be made to St. Joseph’s School, 1027 Ferry St., Danville, PA 17821. All those attending are encouraged to wear masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Arrangements are under the direction of Visneski Funeral Home, Inc., 42 West Mahoning Street, Danville, PA 17821.