Ray was born on Jan 1, 1925, in Patricia, AB, and grew up in Kaslo, BC. He served in the Canadian Airforce during WW II, then studied horticulture and plant physiology, receiving a Bachelor of Science degree from UBC, a Master of Science degree from the University of Idaho, and a PhD from the University of London in England. He worked overseas for Canada’s International Development Program, the United Nations Development Program, and USAID doing technical assistance work in agriculture for 20 years in five developing countries: Malaysia, Ghana, the Philippines, Liberia, and Yemen.
Ray and his wife Joyce travelled in more than 65 countries. They had three children. He was professor of Horticulture at the University of Kentucky in Lexington for 14 years before retiring in 1988 to Penninsylvania and then to Oregon. Ray was a member for five years and a past president of the Rotary Club of Pocono Mountains in PA, and a member of Beaverton Rotary Club for 19 years. He died peacefully at home in Beaverton, OR, on May 22, 2017.