Ralph Lyle Ray, 89, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, and friend, passed away peacefully in his home at Pea Green, Colorado on Saturday, June 1, 2019 incident to bone marrow disease and a long full life. He was born January 8, 1930 in Olathe (Pea Green), Colorado to the late Charles Edward and Bertha Mae (Phillips) Ray.
Ralph graduated from Olathe High School in 1949. He worked as a farmer and a cattleman on his farm his entire life. He was proud of living in Pea Green on the original family homestead. Ralph had many hobbies which he enjoyed with family and friends. He loved everything outdoors including hunting, fishing, camping, and cooking over a fire. He grew a huge garden every year and enjoyed sharing the produce with friends and family. He was an avid sports fan and especially enjoyed softball and football (he was a huge bronco fan!). Ralph was an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He said he was the happiest when he was serving others. He was one to stay to the very last to help clean-up. Ralph was a member and served on the Board of Pea Green Cemetery Board, Pea Green Community Club, and Delta Co-Op. He was also a member of Delta Elks and supported Merna in her numerous community service organizations. Shavano Conservation District recognized Ralph as the 2005 Conservation Farmer of the Year. Anyone who met Ralph became his instant friend. He made everyone feel loved and was fun to be around. He also loved to play practical jokes.
Ralph was previously married to Gertie Lee (Baskett) McCombs and they had two daughters, Kathleen and Karen. Ralph married Merna Lay Storey on Dec. 27th, 1976 and when he married Merna he gained two more daughters, Susan and Lydia.
Ralph was preceded in death by his parents, Charles and Bertha Ray, three sisters Fern (Harry) Taylor and Ellen (Keith) Calhoun and Marie (Gilbert) Wilson and his adopted brother Wilber Dickerson.
Ralph is survived by his wife, Merna (Lay) Ray; his sister Reva Braswell of Royce City, Texas; daughters Kathleen Kathy Ray of Cedaredge, CO, Karen Mann of Pea Green, CO, Susan (Fred) Matney of Farmington, UT; and Lydia (Theodore “Rudy”) Storey-Lopez of Pea Green, CO. As well as 12 grandchildren, and four great grandchildren.
A viewing will be held at Taylor Mortuary on Wednesday, June 5th from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. An additional viewing will be held at 1:00 p.m. followed by memorial services at 2:00 at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Delta (1679 Pioneer Rd) Thursday, June 6, 2019 at 2:00 pm followed by internment at Pea Green Cemetery and potluck funeral dinner at Pea Green Hall.
Arrangements are under the care and direction of Taylor Funeral Service and Crematory. View the internet obituary and sign the online guest registry at www.taylor funeralservice.com.