Ralph Batchelder, 94, died in Mammoth California, March 5, 2002. Born in 1907, at age seven he lost both parents to an influenza epidemic and was raised by relatives and his older siblings. He received an engineering degree from Northeastern University in Boston and married Eleanor Harmon in 1934. He worked in the huts from 1929 into the 1930s and photographed the building of the addition of Madison which he preserved in an album.
After the huts, Ralph and Eleanor moved to Southern California where he worked for Lockheed Aircraft Company and in 1954 moved the family to Mammoth where he built a home and where he became popular “chair one” man for Mammoth Mountain Ski Area. He worked for the Forest Service until retiring in the 1970s. Until a few weeks preceding his death, he personally volunteered his time maintaining hiking trails.