He fought hard in the end, pushed for his treatments and held on as long as he could out of his great love for life and a desire to continue caring for his family. It was love for his wife, his children, and his grandchildren that pushed him to pursue treatments that had very little chance of success, but he never contemplated defeat.
Prior to the discovery of his illness, he was active in a non-profit organization focused on providing comfort to people with acute pain and terminal illness. Even while working a fulltime job he spent time every week on planning, outreach, and comfort care for those suffering and in pain. Along with his wife and other members of the OGF Ray helped to create a community where people could come to seek support and understanding. He is survived by his wife, his daughter, his son, his daughter-in-law and his two granddaughters.
I want people to remember him by the legacy of his hard work, his providership and his great skill as a handyman, builder, lover of music, comedian, husband, father, and friend.
I’d like to share a few stories about the sort of person my father was. Just before his diagnoses but after he had become symptomatic I asked my dad to come fix up a few things at the house I’m staying at. He re-built most of their front porch and installed a wheelchair ramp for My best friends mother and roommate. My dad only knew that I was living with and liked this family, he’d never really met them. Still he came and did all the work expecting no payment.
Ray adopted me when I was an infant and loved me fiercely from the moment he first met me. He worked very hard to provide for our family and was always honest with me. Because of that I’ve grown up knowing that I have value, and never had a reason to doubt my self worth.
At the OGF Ray would often listen to people talk about their problems, their disease process, or their hobbies. He encouraged them to keep fighting and keep seeking treatment. He was always ready to do what he could to help someone find reasons to keep going.
The people with similar stories are too many to count.
We who knew him best remember that he always had a smile and a quick joke ready, even as things got bad and he had to face his own mortality.
We are suffering now, in grief and the stress of final preparations, unresolved medical costs, and the complications of living off of a fixed income. We are asking for the assistance of anyone who knew Ray or who knows his family. We are asking for the help of anyone who has been lovingly adopted. We are asking for the help of anyone who has met and lost someone who was impressive and good beyond their expectations of what this world has to offer.
Our family is in need of money to defer remaining medical expenses and to arrange a modest funeral and cremation. As this was a quick and unexpected illness our family is currently without a buffer to transition into living without him.
The total of anticipated expenses are 1,500$ for death services, 200$ for an urn and around 2,000$ for transitional expenses. We are still discovering what, if any, additional costs we might be facing, particularly for his treatments.
We hope we can raise as much as 6,500$.
Should we receive more generosity than we end up needing to meet this hardship, any additional funds will go toward for the study and treatment of cancer via the Prevent Cancer Foundation (https://preventcancer.org/)
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