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Ronald Allen Prince, 53, of North Little Rock passed away Jan. 23, after a long and brave battle with diabetes and cancer. He was born Feb. 18, 1958 in Little Rock. From an early age, Ron displayed talents both creative and entrepreneurial which would serve him well throughout his life. As a boy, he wrote, edited and published The Arnold Street News, a neighborhood newspaper that also contained ads for Ronâ€™s other enterprises â€“ neighborhood plays and eight millimeter film shows for which he would charge admission and serve refreshments. He also made his own films, which ranged from comedies (using his relatives as actors) to skilled stop motion animation.
Ron attended grade school at St. Theresaâ€™s Catholic School and graduated from Catholic High in 1976. He also studied at Hendrix College and UALR. With his good looks, wit and outgoing personality, Ron was a natural salesman. He worked for many years at his fatherâ€™s business, John Prince Co., selling commercial and industrial heating and air conditioning equipment. At various times, he also sold boats, coffee and crystals which he loved to hunt for and dig up in the woods of Arkansas.
Ron always enjoyed the outdoors, especially Lake Ouachita, and he became an expert water skier. But it was his love of reptiles for which Ron was best known. He kept a succession of snakes and lizards, both domestic and exotic, as pets over the years. He showcased his knowledge of herpetology in schools and libraries where he entertained and educated children under the name, â€śReptile Ron.â€ť As â€śReptile Ron,â€ť he also started his own website from which he sold reptiles and related magazines and artwork.
Ronâ€™s life took him to many places over the years. For a while, he drove a truck for a courier service, a job that allowed him to travel across the country. At one point, he lived in Anchorage, Alaska, where he worked as a DJ and performed celebrity voices at a club called The Flying Machine. Back in Arkansas, he put his talent for doing impressions to work by delivering â€ścelebrity-gramâ€ť greetings for various occasions using the voices of television and movie personalities.
He was preceded in death by his mother, Carolyn Prince.
He is survived by his father, John Prince and wife Kay of Benton; brother, Michael Prince and wife Amanda; sisters, Cathy Norman and husband David, Susan Menefee and husband John and Lisa Parker and husband Tracy; sons, David Prince and Michael Railey Prince; daughter, Rachael Railey Prince; nieces, Christina Fenton, Melanie Lager and husband Kevin and Susie Johnson and husband Jeremiah; nephew, Christopher Parker; one great-niece and three great-nephews; special aunt, Sheila Trujillo; and special friend, Alana Wood.
Visitation will be from 6 to 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 27, followed by a rosary service at 7 p.m. at Little Rock Funeral Home.
The Mass of Christian burial will be Saturday, Jan. 28, at 10 a.m. at Christ the King Catholic Church, celebrated by Msgr. Francis I. Malone, followed by burial at Pinecrest Memorial Park in Alexander.
Pallbearers are Marvin Boyd, Wendell Pahls, Doug Adkins, Ken Kirby, Christopher Murray and Danny Johnston.
Arrangements are by Little Rock Funeral Home.
Online guestbook: www.littlerockfuneralhome.com.
Family comments: Ron will be greatly missed by his family and friends and he will never be forgotten by anyone who ever met him. He was a fighter to the end, seldom complaining, but putting those around him at ease with his humor and kindness, even in the midst of great suffering. Ronâ€™s family would like to thank the nurses and staff at Hospice Home Care who did such a wonderful job of caring for Ron in his final weeks.