First Congregational Church
38 S Winooski Ave
Burlington, VT 05401
Celebration of Life
Saturday, Jul. 27, 2019
2:00 PM
First Congregational Church
38 South Winooski Ave
Burlington, VT
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Ray L. Harwick

1926 - 2019 Obituary Condolences
Ray L. Harwick Obituary
Ray L. Harwick

Shelburne - Reverend Ray L. Harwick, born at an early age on June 5, 1926 in Quakertown, PA, passed away May 13, 2019. He was preceded in death by his loving wife Patricia, his parents Monroe B. and Verna D. Harwick, and brother Leon. Ray is survived by daughter Diana, daughter Joslyn and husband Joe, and son Nevin and wife Heather. He is survived by 3 grandchildren (Erin [Brenden], Stephanie [Brian] and Katie [Keith]) and 4 great-grandchildren (Nolan, Leo, Ezra and Madeline). He is also survived by siblings, Stanley [Susan] and Miriam [Jack], and his cats Abby and Shaggy.

Rev. Harwick graduated from Franklin & Marshall College and Lancaster Theological Seminary. He was called to the ministry and served as pastor of Evangelical & Reformed and United Church of Christ (UCC) churches for 17 years, in Pennsylvania. His second ministry of 21 years was working with the UCC conferences in Ohio and Connecticut as well as ecumenical work in Ohio and Michigan. Ray's third ministry for 20 years was as a church fundraiser, helping raise over $200 M for churches from Maine to Missouri before retiring in 2007.

Ray was indignant about racial injustice and became involved in the Civil Rights movement in Levittown, PA. He was the chairman of the Levittown Citizens Committee and his leadership, along with 3 other congregations, helped calm the August 1957 race riots. In 1963, Ray organized a bus trip from Reading, PA to the March on Washington. He had the opportunity to meet and work with civil rights leaders during the 1960s and 1970s.

Ray was a man of words, and would greet you with a smile and a pun. He was a voracious reader who also enjoyed gardening, sailing, fishing, golfing and playing bridge. He sang in the church choir and with various choral groups, and had a retirement career playing the hammered dulcimer at venues around Vermont.

Mr. Harwick served in the 8th Army in Yokohama, Japan following WWII and lived in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Connecticut and Vermont. He has been a resident at Wake Robin in Shelburne, VT for 12 years. He served on the Vermont Public Radio board and was a member of First Congregational UCC in Burlington.

A celebration of Ray's life will be held at First Congregational Church, 38 South Winooski Ave, Burlington, VT. The service will be at 2:00 pm on Saturday, July 27, 2019. Donations in lieu of flowers may be made to Vermont Public Radio.
Published in The Burlington Free Press on June 2, 2019
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