Gary A. Ringhofer

OWATONNA — Gary A. Ringhofer, a lifelong resident of Owatonna, died April 30th, 2021 at his home in Owatonna. The funeral service is set for Thursday, May 6th, 2021 at 11:00 am at St. John Church in Owatonna with interment to follow at St. John Cemetery with Military Honors being provided by the Steele County Funeral Unit. Friends may greet the family on Wednesday, May 5th, 2021 from 4:00pm - 7:00pm at Brick-Meger Funeral Home and one hour prior to the funeral service at the church on Thursday. Family and friends may live stream the memorial service from one of two sites: St. John Lutheran Church of Owatonna Facebook page or St. John Lutheran Church website at

Gary was born on August 9th, 1950 in Owatonna and was one of five children to Clarence and Irene (Horak) Ringhofer. He attended Owatonna High School and graduated in 1968. After high school Gary worked at Tubeco until enlisting in the United States Army in 1969 where he served in Vietnam until he was honorably discharged in 1971. He returned to Owatonna after serving his country and worked for MNDOT. In 1980 Gary started working as a deputy for the Steele County Sheriff's department under then Sheriff Wes Wilker. In 1983, he was promoted to Investigator and in 1999 was promoted to Chief Deputy. Gary was elected as Sheriff in 2002 where he served until his retirement in 2010. Gary also attended the FBI Academy. Gary was the Commander of the Owatonna American Legion for two separate terms. His memberships included the Owatonna V.F.W, American Legion, Eagles and the Elk's.

Gary will be remembered for community minded spirit and long-standing service to the Steele County Communities. He will be missed by many friends and co-workers.

Gary loved everything outdoors from deer and bear hunting to fishing and elk hunting. He loved spending time up north at the cabin and especially loved those times when his children and grandchildren were able to join him. Gary adored his family and was very active in their lives. He was very close with his children and grandsons and enjoyed taking hunting and fishing trips with them as well as going to baseball games and watching the grandsons' sporting events.

He will be greatly missed by his children Jason Young and Amy Richter both of Owatonna. His Grandsons Anthony Young, Christopher Richter and Jackson Richter. Siblings Donny (Jackie) Ringhofer, Barb and (Ed) Beaupre, Duane (Jina) Ringhofer and Dennis (Becca Sletten) all of Owatonna. Gary is preceded in death by his parents Clarence and Irene (Horak) Ringhofer.

A Celebration of Life Event will be held at the Owatonna American Legion on Saturday, May 22nd starting at 3pm.

Memorials are preferred to the Owatonna American Legion Building fund. For more information or to leave a condolence message go to

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