WINTHROP - Raymond F. Guerette, 83, a resident of Winthrop, and formerly of Los Alamos, N.M., passed away on Friday, Dec. 27, 2013.
Ray was born on Oct. 25, 1930, in Winthrop, the son of Charles and Julia (Currier) Guerette.
Ray graduated from Edward Little High School in Auburn in 1949. He commuted from Winthrop to Auburn daily with his high school football coach. This arrangement was made because his coach realized that Ray had talent and wanted to expose him to Division 1 coaches. The University of New Mexico offered him a football scholarship. And Ray accepted the offer. He packed his bags, rode the train to Albuquerque, joined the Sigma Chi fraternity and played football.
During his college years, he left for a year to serve in the Air Force during the Korean Conflict, but returned to Albuquerque to finish his schooling and football eligibility. Ray played both offense and defense and closed his final season as New Mexico's leading scorer. He was also hailed as one of the best defensive lineman in the conference.
He met the love of his life, Gervaise (Geri) Provencher, of Lewiston, when he returned home the summer of 1954 to work at Cobbossee Camp for Boys. The following summer they were married.
Ray earned BS and MA degrees from the University of New Mexico in 1956 and 1959 consecutively.
He was a teacher/coach at Albuquerque High School, where he was fortunate enough to teach/coach the Unser brothers. In 1961, Ray decided to attend Dental School at the University of Missouri, where he graduated with a DDS in 1965. Upon graduation, they moved to Lewiston and Ray practiced dentistry for a year.
In 1966, Ray and Geri, and their children, moved west to Los Alamos, N.M., where Ray practiced dentistry for more than 30 years. As a member of the community, Ray made things happen - getting involved in many organizations, including the American Legion, Kiwanis, Los Alamos/White Rock Chamber of Commerce, American Dental Association and the Santa Fe District Dental Association. He also volunteered his services in the community by leading initiatives as well as serving on the board for the University of New Mexico LA branch, Los Alamos Task Force on Drug Abuse, Parents in Action and the Youth American Football League. In 1982, he was the recipient of the Distinguished Service Award for Outstanding Contribution in the fight against drug abuse. He also served on many local and state Republican Party Central Committees.
After retiring, Ray and Geri returned to the Winthrop area. Ray, along with his brother Roger, decided that Winthrop needed a war memorial. Alongside his brother, and the other committee members, they raised the funds necessary to erect the beautiful memorial at Norcross point.
Ray was a communicant of the Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church in Los Alamos, N.M., and St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Winthrop.
Ray was predeceased by his three brothers, Robert, Roger and Larry Guerette.
Ray is survived by his wife Geri, and their three children, Deborah (John) Kuzloski, of Jackson Hole, Wyo., Michelle (Tom) Weaver, of Lake Orion, Mich., and Raymond Jr. (Lori), of Conifer, Colo.; his four grandchildren, Rebecca Carpenter, of Denver, Colo., Bryan Carpenter, of San Diego, Calif., Erica (Brad) Miller, of Madison, Wis., William Weaver (Sarah Murray), of Indianapolis, Ind., and great-granddaughter, Acadia-Rose, of Denver, Colo.; his two sisters, Theresa (Terry) Morrison and Lorraine Haag, his sisters-in-law, Ellen, Betty and Joanne, all of Winthrop, and many nieces, nephews and cousins.
Relatives and friends are invited to a celebration of Ray's life and Mass of Christian Burial at 11 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 3, 2013, at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church, 130 Route 133, Winthrop, Maine with a reception immediately following at Sully's Restaurant.
Burial will be in the spring at Glenside Cemetery, Turkey Lane, Winthrop.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Ray's memory to: Winthrop EMS Fund, c/o Town of Winthrop, 17 Highland Avenue, Winthrop, ME 04364.
Arrangements are in the care of Roberts Funeral Home, 62 Bowdoin Street, Winthrop where memories, condolences, photos and videos may be shared with the family on the obituary page at our website www.khrfuneralhomes.com.