Rufus Ogden, Jr. Married: Sandy
P.O. Box 984 Children: Lesley Jill 1
Lake City; Florida Occupation: Salesman
Married 5.5 years. Bought 117 acres of land for farming and cattle. Active President of Columbia County Cattleman’s Assoc. Employed Dixie Lime as salesman.
After graduating from CHS, I attended Young-Harris Junior College, in Young-Harris, Georgia for one year. In 1961, I transferred to Georgia Southem College in Statesboro, Georgia. I graduated in 1965 with a BS in Business Administration. After graduation, I returned to Lake City and worked with Virginia-Carolina Chemical Company for five years. 1970-1981 was spent working with Dixie Lime & Stone Company as a salesman, travelling North Florida, South Georgia, South East Alabama and South West South Carolina.
I joined the Florida National Guard in 1965 and was stationed in Ft. Benning, Ga., and Ft. Jackson, SC.
In 1981, I farmed fulltime for one year and quickly came to the conclusion that I could not make a living by farming only.
In 1982 I joined the distinguished ranks of the teachers of Columbia County, teaching Agriculture to Junior High students. What an experience that was!! I later taught in the Drop-Out Prevention program and eventually tried to hold law and order in the In-School Suspension room. I retired from the Columbia County School System in 2005.
I have also been in the cattle business most of my live and this currently occupies most of my time.
I married Sandy McAllister in 1963 and we have two children, Lesley, who lives in Lincoln City, Oregon, and Kedra, who lives in Lake City. Sandy and I parted company in 1983. In 1985 I married my soulmate, Margie Mershon. Margie has two children, Brian and Amy Slanker, and both of them live in Lake City. Together we have five grandchildren, Brittney, Valerie, Seth, Hunter and Lindsey. Brittney is a sophomore at FSU and the rest are under the age of 10.
Margie and I enjoy collecting antiques and travelling. We have been to the Pacific Northwest several times, and to St. John, USVI, in 2006,with a return trip planned for this summer. If you have never been to either of these places, I would definitely recommend you put them on your “bucket list”.
This doesn’t sound like much for fifty years but it has been a wonderful life. It seems like only yesterday we were graduating from CHS!!
Rufus Ogden 20 Nov 1942 – 20 Feb 2022
Rufus Coleman Ogden, Jr., 79, of Lake City, died Sunday, February 20,2022, at his home, from Acute Myeloid Leukemia. Rufus was the son of Rufus, Sr. and Meriba Ferguson Ogden.
He is survived by his wife, Margie, and his children, Lesley Ogden (William Arens), Kedra Moreau (Paul), Brian Slanker (Kim), and Amy Slanker, and his grandchildren, Brittney Moreau, Valerie Marker (Robert), Seth Slanker, Hunter Keen, Lindsey Slanker, Leah Dwyer (Nate) and Caitlyn Moreau.
Rufus’ greatest love was for his family, an extended family that included the Mershon’s, Jeffrey & Jessica Mershon, Annette Nelson, Sharon Lyons (Jimmy), Alvin Mershon (June) and Steve Nelson (Tassie). He thoroughly enjoyed Sunday dinner at the Mershon home and sitting on the back porch there talking. Working with his cattle was his relaxation, even when he came in at night completely exhausted. He loved collecting old things and reminiscing about what they were and how they were used.
He stayed connected with his Class of 1960 classmates and loved them all. Rufus felt he had been blessed with the time he was granted in the end to meet with friends and family. He had the rare chance not given to many to say farewell to those he loved. He loved, and was loved by, so very many and will be missed beyond words.
He struggled greatly to understand the leukemia that caused his death because it took him away from the family and land that he so loved long before he was ready to leave. He fought a 2 ½ year battle with leukemia surpassing the doctors expectations
A graveside funeral service for Rufus will be conducted on Thursday, February 24, 2022 at 11:00 A.M. in the Mt. Zion Cemetery (Off of Ogden Loop and Orange Pond Glen) with Rev. Hugh Dampier and Rev. Paul Moreau officiating. Interment will follow. The family will receive friends for a time of visitation on Wednesday evening, February 23, 2022 from 5:00-7:00 P.M. at the funeral home.