Raymond Bohn Williams, retired State Forest Ranger, passed away Oct. 8, 2008, at the age of 86.
A descendent of pioneering California families, including Santa Rosa's first mayor, Ray was born and raised in Santa Rosa, where he graduated from high school in 1941. He married Catherine Marie Mattazzoni, the love of his life, and they celebrated 53 years of marriage until her death in 2001.
They were the parents of two sons, Mark and Gary. After serving in the Navy in WWII, Ray graduated from Oakland Institute of Art. He then began a long and varied career with the California Department of Forestry. Ray worked in many areas of Northern California during his career, including Wilbur Springs, Santa Rosa and the Alder Conservation Camp. He retired from his post as the state forest ranger at Rohnerville Air Attack Base in Humboldt County.
Ray was well known for his artistic talents. Many family and friends received caricature drawings for birthdays, weddings and retirement occasions. Ray was also a scrimshaw artist, selling his work around the world. After retiring, he and Catherine had an antique store, the Scrimshaw Shop, in Klamath.
Ray was preceded in death by his parents, Leona and Clayton Williams, his wife, Catherine, and son, Gary Bohn Williams. He is survived by his eldest son,
Mark Williams, his sister, Anna Bernice Starkey, and a big family of nieces and nephews.
Family and friends gathered over this past weekend to honor his memory. If desired, donations may be made in Ray's name to the "Richard J. Ernest Scholarship Fund" and mailed to CDF Fighters, 1731 J Street, Suite 100, Sacramento, CA 95841.