Ralph Samuel Hess Jr. passed away peacefully at Commonwealth Senior Living on Thursday, August 1, 2019. He was born on March 24, 1922, in Danville, Va. He was a graduate G.W. High School and then went to VPI (VT) where he graduated in 1944 with a degree in aeronautical engineering. While at VPI he was captain of the cadet corps. He later served in the U.S. Army during World War II. He worked for Douglas Aircraft in California. He later returned to Danville as Sales manager of WDVA radio. Upon retirement, Ralph worked with his father and brother in the family owned business, Hodnett and Speer Jewelers. Ralph was predeceased by his parents, Ralph Samuel Hess and Mary Hicks Hess; and his brother, William Leigh Hess (Peggy). He is survived by his wife of 68 years, Ruth Jones; his two sons, Lloyd Hess (Yvonne) and Richard Hess; two granddaughters, Brianna Cassada and Gretchen Hess; and several nieces and nephews. He taught Sunday school classes for young adults and adults at his church, Main Street United Methodist Church. He later became a member of West Main Baptist Church. Ralph was a Rotarian for over 59 years, served with the Chamber of Commerce, and served in many other charitable organizations in Danville. He was a life member of the National Speleological Society and has part of a cave named for him, "Hess' Hallow" in Blacksburg, Va. He and Ruth loved traveling and they visited many countries. He loved sailing and being on the water and flying small planes. A memorial service will be held 5 p.m. Sunday, August 4, 2019, at Townes Memorial Chapel with the Rev. Bruce Wilson officiating. The family will receive friends one hour before the service at the funeral home. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial donations be made to West Main Baptist Church, 450 West Main Street, Danville, VA 24541. Townes Funeral Home, 215 West Main Street is serving the Hess family. Online condolences may be made at www.townesfuneralhome.com.