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Raymond J. Varela

HANOVER Raymond Joseph "Ray" Varela, 77, entered into God's eternal care peacefully at home on Friday, October 12, 2012. He was the loving husband of Theresa E. (Zalewski) Varela, with whom he celebrated 50 loving years of marriage in June 2012. Born March 19, 1935, in Ossing, N.Y., he was the son of the late Manuel Joseph and Amelia Marie (Danellio) Varela. Ray attended the Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church, Abbottstown, for the past 17 years. He was a member of the United States Capitol Police Retired Officers Association, Inc., Washington, D.C., for the past 18 years. Other memberships include the Loyal Order of Moose Lodge and Springhaven Home Association in Waldorf, Md., where he resided for 30 years before retiring and moving to Hanover. Ray was a high school graduate of the Washington State University and then graduated from the Maryland University State College in 1978 with a degree in Law Enforcement. He was a 20 year veteran of the United States Air Force, serving from 1958 to 1974 with assignments in France, Korea, Iran, and Germany. He continued to serve his country another 20 years as a federal employee from 1974 to 1994 with the United States House of Representatives, Washington, D.C. as a United States Capitol Police Officer, protecting the members of Congress, the Senate, and many other visiting dignitaries. Before and after retiring as a federal employee, he was also employed for 17 years by Lowes of Waldorf, Md., and Lowes of Hanover. Ray was a "people person" and enjoyed meeting and helping friends with many projects, especially fixing and repairing cars. In his spare time, he enjoyed football and baseball. For a long time he enjoyed the friction between the Redskins and the Cowboys. Of course, Ray always rooted for the Cowboys. The New York Yankees were his favorite baseball team. In addition to his wife, Terry, Ray is survived by his two devoted daughters, Teresa Ann Avery and her husband, David Allen of Bertram, Texas, and Rose Lucia Varela of Prince Frederick, Md.; four grandchildren, Raymond Joseph Avery and his wife, Trisha of Bertram, Texas, Krystle Michelle Campbell and her husband, Jake Parrish of Bertram, and Madilyn Dawna Stanton and Garrett Joshua Stanton of Prince Frederick, Md.; four great-grandchildren, Raymond Joseph and Parker Allen Avery, Harley Grayson Avery, and Lexus Michelle Campbell, all of Bertram; sisters, Linda DeCoursey of Ormond Beach, Fla., Delores Evans of Seymour, Tenn., Veronica Fletcher of Palm Beach Garden, Fla., and Carmen Spatafore of Daytona Beach Shores, Fla.; and brothers, Manuel "Chip" Varela and his wife, Joan, and Alexander A. Varela, both of Jacksonville, Fla.; and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by a sister, Mercedes LaPore of New York. A time to share memories with the family and an opportunity to view will be on Monday from 3 to 5 and 7 to 9 p.m., with prayers at 8 p.m., at the Wetzel Funeral Home and Crematory, 549 Carlisle St., Hanover. Family and friends will meet at the funeral home on Tuesday at 9 a.m. to process to Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church, 6084 W. Canal Road, Abbottstown, for a Mass of Christian Burial at 10 a.m. with the Rev. Kenneth G. Smith as celebrant. Family and friends are invited to a luncheon at Ryan's, 341 Eisenhower Drive, Hanover, immediately following the Mass. Burial with full military honors will be on Wednesday at 12 noon in St. Mary's Cemetery, 1594 S. Main St., Wilkes Barre 18706. Contributions may be made in Ray's memory to VNA of Hanover & Spring Grove, Inc., 440 N. Madison St., Hanover, PA, 17331. To share memories of Ray Varela and view a video tribute, please visit www.wetzelfuneralhome.com

Published in Evening Sun on Oct. 14, 2012
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