Dec 28, 1920 - Dec 7, 2013
Resident of Santa Clara
Under the loving care of his family and friends and the guidance of hospice, Ray passed away December 7, 2013 in Santa Cruz. Ray was born in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan to Carl Raymond and Olive Ecklid Austin. The eldest of 5 children, Ray was raised in Negaunee. His father was a miner and his mother was a first-generation Norwegian immigrant. Ray's love of learning and athletic excellence enabled him to attend college where he earned a Masters Degree in Education. He served as a 1st Lt. in the USMC during WWII. Ray married Dorothy Lindstrom in 1944.
Later he moved his family to Pinconning, MI where he coached a variety of high school sports. In 1959 the family moved to Santa Clara. He taught for 26 years, and was deeply involved in helping to secure collective bargaining rights for teachers. Ray was a natural leader with varied interests. He served as president or board member for a variety of groups, such as the California Teachers' Association, San Jose Flycasters, UU Fellowship of Sunnyvale and the Santa Clara Unified School District Retirees' Association. Ray was an avid fly fisherman who traveled the world to pursue his passion. He loved gardening and created an amazing backyard paradise. He was a voracious reader and supporter of the public library system. He played a mean game of Scrabble and a meaner game of poker. Above all, Ray was a life-long learner, role model, and sports fan.
Ray was preceded in death by his beloved Dorothy in 2007. He is survived by his sister Betty Johnson of Flint, MI; son Bruce Austin (Carmen) of Tualatin, OR; daughter Cheryl Certo (Marcus Ervin, Jr) of Santa Cruz; and daughter Janice Austin of Shingle Springs. He was a loving patriarch to 5 grand-children and 8 great-grandchildren, and he had a host of close friends
Services will be held Dec 22, 2013 at 2:00 P.M. at the UU Fellowship of Sunnyvale. Please go to www.uufs.org, or email firstname.lastname@example.org for driving directions.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Second Harvest Food Bank.
Published in Santa Cruz Sentinel on Dec. 15, 2013