Ralph B McPhail

March 30, 1927December 12, 2019

Ralph McPhail was born March 30, 1927 to James and Agnus McPhail in Bassfield, MS. His family moved from Bassfield to Quitman, MS in 1937 where he attended Clarkdale School. Upon entering the Navy in 1944, he was stationed at Great Lakes, Illinois and transferred to the South Pacific Theatre at Ulithi then was placed aboard the USS Farenholt DD491 Destroyer during the Battle of the Philippines as a Fireman 1st Class. He received Two Battle Stars for his service in the US Navy. One for the Battle of the Philippines and one for the Battle of Okinawa where he was allowed to witness the surrender the Japanese held Island of Sakashima Gunto. After the Japanese surrender he was stationed with his ship in Charleston, SC for decommissioning and left the Navy in 1946 to return home.

After coming back to Mississippi he performed several stints of different occupations, one of which being an Ironworker. In 1948 he enlisted in the US Army and was stationed for a short time at Fort Jackson, South Carolina. While at Fort Jackson he volunteered for a transfer to Fort Hood, Texas, with the 1st Cavalry Division. While he was with the 1st Cav. he was then transferred to Tokyo and Sendai Japan for the Occupational Force after WWII. In early July 1950, while he was assigned as a Master Sergeant with Co. H, 8th Cav Regiment, 1st Cav Division he was given orders for an amphibious landing at PO Hang Dong, South Korea and was captured but escaped at Taegu, South Korea while being sent to Help with reinforcements at Pusan, South Korea. He fought at Seoul, Pyongyang, North Korea, Numerous skirmishes all through North Korea and on the Yalu River and at Unsun North Korea where he was awarded the Bronze Star for Valor. While in Korea, he accumulated 4 battle stars and was sent home in early 1951, and was stationed at Fort Sill, Oklahoma and was discharged in May of 1952.

In 1953 Ralph and Inez McPhail were married and had 3 sons. Paul K. McPhail (wife Pamela, one son, Justin McPhail, wife Kimberly and daughter Erianna) Michael R. McPhail (wife Luellen, daughter Martha Ann and Son Michael Jr.) Steve McPhail (wife Angela, daughters Victoria, husband Christopher Murray and their children Mary Benton Murray and Brooks Murray, Alexandria, McPhail Reves and her husband Matthew Reeves and Elizabeth McPhail.

Ralph and Inez started Capitol Erection and Engineering Co, Inc in 1957 and started McPhail Construction Co., Inc. in 1980. Ralph retired working full time when he was 80 years of age. He was preceded in death by his parents, brothers James L. McPhail, Bobby Ray McPhail, his sisters Genece Gordon, Charlotte Dillard. He has one remaining sister Minnie Lou Hamburg.

Visitation will be held on Tuesday, December 17 from 12:00 to 2:00 PM at Lakewood South Funeral Home, 430 McCluer Rd., Jackson, MS 39212, followed by a graveside service at Lakewood South Memorial Park.

Please visit for online guestbook.


  • Visitation Tuesday, December 17, 2019
  • Graveside Service Tuesday, December 17, 2019


Ralph B McPhail

have a memory or condolence to add?

Tracy Duncan

December 17, 2019

My condolences go out to his son, Michael McPhail, and family. I didn't know Ralph, but apparently he was a well decorated war hero many times over and an accomplished businessman. He produced a good man in his son, Michael, who is head of a wonderful, successful and Godly family. This speaks highly of Ralph and Michael. May God hold close those surviving Ralph and show them His love and support.
Tracy Duncan