|Birth: ||Jan. 6, 1921|
|Death: ||Jan. 10, 1983|
James Ray Kennedy
James Ray Kennedy 62, passed away on January 10, 1983 in Oak Harbor, Washington. Ray was born January 6, 1921 in Pendleton, Oregon, the only child of Ross Taylor Kennedy and Mary Agnes Palmer Kennedy.
Ray is preceded in death by his father Ross Kennedy and second wife Jean Kennedy. Surviving are his mother Agnes Kennedy, wife Carol, son James Ross Kennedy with his son Zachary; daughter and son-in-law Linda and Jim Rodgers with their daughters Sherri and Lori.
At a young age Ray learned to ride horses and shoot rifles and never missed a Pendleton Round Up. In 1933 the small family moved to Tacoma, Washington where Ray graduated from Stadium High School in 1939 with many awards and medals earned through his participation in the Stadium Rifle Club.
Ray married Muriel Eleanor Robinson, the only child of Arthur Robinson and Mabel Fletcher Robinson on May 9, 1942 in Tacoma. Two children were born of this union, James Ross Kennedy and Linda Jean Kennedy both in Tacoma.
Ray joined the US Navy in 1943 and spent his enlistment years as a Seabee serving in Rhode Island, Texas and Florida. Upon discharge he and Muriel returned to Tacoma where they lived until 1958. During the Tacoma years Ray worked many trades including carpenter, real estate agent and welder working on dams such as Chief Joseph and Yale and the Hanford Nuclear Plant.
In 1958 Ray and Muriel moved their family to Oak Harbor Washington on Whidbey Island. There he and his parents established Kennedy's Island Cabinet and Fixture Shop in Oak Harbor and also built many fine homes in the area. After the passing of his father Ross, Ray became employed with the Oak Harbor School District as a bus driver and the head of the maintenance department and worked part time at the Navy Exchange in maintenance.
In 1968 Ray and Muriel bought the Oak Harbor Roller Barn, a giant dairy barn built in the early 1900's that had been converted into a roller rink in the 1950's. Ray and Muriel divorced the next year and Ray owned the rink until 1982. The skating rink became an important part of Ray's life and it also provided the family with some of the happiest memories of Ray.
In 1969 Ray remarried Jean Guyer, with the union bringing Ray two stepchildren Pam and Donald Cooper. Jean passed away in 1974.
On December 8, 1978 Ray married Carol O'Donnell from British Columbia, Canada bringing with her two children, Kathy and John O'Donnell. Ray and Carol operated the Roller Barn until they sold it in 1982.
Ray was diagnosed with grade 4 Astrocytoma in 1981 and endured brain surgery and radiation that happily lengthened his life for a short while in which he was able to buy a boat and travel up and down the coast enjoying the San Juan Islands and Canada. In the later part of 1982 his tumor returned with a vengeance. His life and battle ended on January 10, 1983 only 4 days after his 62nd birthday.
Cremation was performed by the Bartleson Funeral Chapel in Oak Harbor, Washington. Ray took his last boat ride into his beloved ocean waters off the coast of Whidbey Island, Washington to have his ashes sprinkled to fulfill his final wish.
Ross Taylor Kennedy (1896 - 1963)
Mary Agnes Palmer Kennedy (1898 - 1986)
Muriel Eleanor Robinson Williamson (1922 - 2010)
Lavern Jean Campbell Kennedy (1935 - 1976)
Cremated, Ashes scattered at sea.
Specifically: Ashes scattered off the coast of Whidbey Island, Washington
Created by: Linda Rodgers
Record added: Oct 03, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 59575006