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John J. Ratoff

June 5, 1926 – October 26, 2007

Hampton Union, Friday, October 26, 2007

[The following article is courtesy of the Hampton Union and Seacoast Online.]

EXETER — John J. Ratoff, 81, of Pine Meadow, died Friday, Oct. 26, 2007, at his home with his family at his side.

Mr. Ratoff was born June 5, 1926, in Nashua, the youngest of nine children, to his parents John A. and Josephine (Staniewicz) Ratoff.

He resided in Exeter for the past 30 years, following a long residence in Hampton.

Mr. Ratoff shared 40 years of marriage with his college sweetheart, Arlene (Tobey) Ratoff, who died in 1993.

His family members include two daughters, Andrea R. Checovich and Nancy Johnson, both of North Hampton; a son, John A. Ratoff of Kennebunk, Maine; and 10 grandchildren. He is further survived by three brothers, Stanley Ratoff of Edison, N.J., and Felix Ratoff and Robert Ratoff, both of Nashua; two sisters, Josephine Chevrette of Port Richey, Fla., and Ann Hogan of Huntsville, Texas; and several nieces and nephews.

WE REMEMBER: Mr. Ratoff received a bachelor of arts degree from Colby College in Waterville, Maine, and a bachelor of science in pharmacy from Northeastern University in Boston.

Mr. Ratoff was a veteran of World War II, having served as a crew member on the PB4Y Liberator Aircraft with the U.S. Navy.

He owned and operated Tobey’s Drug Store in Hampton for 20 years.

He was active in state politics, serving in the N.H. Legislature for two terms, and in 1968 was the chairman of Gov. Walter Peterson’s election committee.

Mr. Ratoff served as a liquor commissioner, a state negotiator, and in 1984 was appointed commissioner of the N.H. Department of Employment Security. He retired in 2004.

SERVICES: Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to call on from 2 to 4 and from 6 to 8 p.m. Monday at the Remick & Gendron Funeral Home-Crematory, 811 Lafayette Road, Hampton. A Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Tuesday at St. Michael Church in Exeter. Burial will be in High Street Cemetery, Hampton. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to New Hampshire Catholic Charities, P.O. Box 686, Manchester, NH 03105-0686, or Seacoast Hospice, 10 Hampton Road, Exeter, NH 03833. For details, visit

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