Fred Ray, 87, died on summer solstice, June 21, 2014. He had been a resident of Crescent City for the last 17 years.
He was born and raised in Santa Monica. In 1944, he joined the U.S. Coast Guard and participated in the Battle of Okinawa. After the war, he became an able-bodied seaman in the Merchant Marine. For 23 years he sailed the world to every continent. "The most fun I've ever had," he always said. He had many tales.
In 1969, he returned to Southern California to pursue his talent in drawing. Though self-taught, he became a well-established landscape painter in the Los Angeles area. When he moved to Crescent City, he continued his art and his work has been shown in numerous galleries. His paintings have also spread across the country by means of the internet. He was a teacher and inspiration to his fellow artists and friends until the very end.
He is survived by his two sisters, Joan Kirkwood and Jean Thomm of Los Angeles.