Sunday, April 25, 2010

Saturday, April 3, 2010

In memoriam: a celebration

After a long and difficult battle with cancer, Preston's Uncle Ray passed away shortly after Midnight Thursday, April 1st.

(Notice the pink Dora the Explorer hat?)

Uncle Ray has a special place in our hearts. He was one of a kind: a real maverick, a family man, an accomplished outdoorsman, an avid fisherman, a tough guy with a heart of gold. Uncle Ray's big heart extended not only to his own children (all of whom I know he thought the world of), but to any of those around him. If there was a small one around, you could bet that Uncle Ray would have them befriended within a few minutes and either in his arms or engrossed in a rowdy game. Uncle Ray lived for the moment, and part of the fun of being around him was getting to know his great sense of humor and enjoying his spontaneity. I will never tire of hearing other people's memories of him.

With his children

Uncle Ray had such an enthusiasm for life, and lived his in a way that is worth celebrating. If you have any great memories of Uncle Ray, please feel free to leave a comment or link to your own blog.

If you would like to make a donation to help the family with Uncle Ray's final expenses, please email me at

My favorite memory: While still living in Vegas, we took a trip to the Cottonwood area to visit the family. One afternoon, we all met at Uncle Ray's house. We spent the day enjoying the back yard--Preston took Jaxon for a ride on the quad (Uncle Ray had built up a little dirt track for him and Russell and Ashley to enjoy), and the kids had a good time chasing Uncle Ray's three pigs around. Jaxon was 10 months old, and spent the majority of the time being toted around by all the family members. Once Uncle Ray got a hold of him, they took off chasing one of the pigs around the yard, Uncle Ray ran in a half-crouch, holding Jaxon out in front of him, close to the ground, so he could get a good look at the pigs. I don't know which of them laughed harder, or who was having more fun. The game ended, though, when Uncle Ray decided to try to get Jaxon to ride a pig, which promptly scared the ever living daylights out of both the pig and Jaxon--and made Jaxon cry.

Making friends again