Ronald H. Mayer passed away on Thursday, March 18, at the age of 88, in his home in Roswell, New Mexico. A life-time Roswell resident he is survived by his wife Martha Moore Mayer, daughter Suzanne (Will) Burke, step-grandsons William Jr (Ana), Christopher (Brenda) and Matthew Burke and step-granddaughters Lauren and Lindsay Corley and Kristin (Travis) Gerhardt. He is also survived by his beloved granddaughters Sarah (fiancé Charles) and Shelby Johnson daughters of his deceased daughter Amy Mayer Johnson. Ronny’s devotion to agriculture showed through his life as a Rancher, Ranch Real Estate Broker, and Appraiser. He served as Chaves County Commissioner in the early 1960s and New Mexico Real Estate Agriculture Commissioner in the 1970s. Ronny was born in San Angelo, Texas on February 22, 1933 to Abe Mayer Jr. and Juanita Heard Mayer who predeceased him in death. He was also predeceased by his brother Len Mayer of Denver, Colorado, and sister Emily Leland of Fredericksburg, Texas.
Ronny received his High School diploma from New Mexico Military Institute in 1951 and attended his freshman year of college at Texas Tech University. Then he joined the Marine Corp during the Korean War. In 1957 he met and married Martha Moore of Omaha, Nebraska, while working at Swift & Company as a livestock buyer on the Omaha Livestock Exchange. Ronny and Martha spent the next three years working on the family-owned ranch in West Texas where his two daughters Suzanne and Amy were born. In 1962 Ronny and his family went to work as a foreman on the Latigo Ranch in Santa Rosa, NM for Lincoln County Livestock Co. of Roswell which later became Diamond A Cattle Company. In 1966 he and his family moved to Roswell where his daughters could attend public school. Ronny, who had just received his Real Estate Broker's license opened up his own company selling farms and ranches under the name of “The Ranchfinder”. He continued his longtime interest in The New Mexico Military Institute and was elected president of the Alumni Association and later was appointed by Governor Bruce King to a term on the Board of Regent at the Institute in the late 1970s.
Ronny and his family were very active in owning and operating several ranches in New Mexico, Texas, and Colorado during the 1960s and 1970s. At one time owning a 50% interest in a beautiful mountain ranch just west of Raton, NM adjoining the Vermejo Park Ranch. Eventually, he would fulfill a lifetime dream of owning and operating Latigo Ranch of Southeastern New Mexico. Latigo Ranch was a very nice grazing and hunting year-long ranch next to the Capitan Mountain, just south of the old village of Arabella. In 2010, after selling the Latigo Ranch Ronny and Martha purchased a ranch in Central Texas near where their daughter and granddaughters were living. Ronny’s home base was always Roswell and the surrounding ranch country. He continued to hold small farms and ranches in the area up until 2019 when he got out of the ranching business for good.
Always the consummate storyteller he later in life wrote and self-published two books, “No Cry for Help” and “Let’s Cowboy Up”. This along with the many written stories that he has left for his family is his lasting legacy. Ronny Mayer was a loving husband and father, good friend, and mentor to many. He will be missed as there will never be another “Ranchfinder”.
In lieu of flowers, please help us remember “The Ranchfinder” by donating to All Saints Catholic School, 2700 N. Kentucky, Roswell, NM 88201, or The Historical Society for SE NM, 200 N. Lee Ave., Roswell, NM 88201, or charity of your choice. Due to current conditions no memorial service will be held at this time.
A special thank you to our friends and family who supported us during Ronny’s illness, Susan Gibson (Care Giver), Glynn Shelton (Nurse), and the entire staff of Kindred Hospice.