STEPHENS, Raymond Joseph
Raymond Joseph Stephens passed peacefully at home in Sydney on Wednesday, May 17, 2017.
Born May 18, 1933, at home, Ray grew up hardscrabble on Mira Road just outside Sydney, one of eleven children of parents, Albert and Mae (Flemming) Stephens.
As a teenager, Ray was apprenticed as a plumber by his older brother and became a journeyman by the age of 19. In 1953, he married Marie (Ross) of Whitney Pier and had six children. They raised their family on Cartier Street in Sydney’s Ashby district and from 1969, on Woodill Street located on Ray’s beloved Hardwood Hill. In his early years, Ray worked construction in various 1950 hotspots, such as Elliot Lake, ON and Point Tupper, NS, with “the wife and kids” and their trusty travel trailer behind his 1958 Pontiac Pathfinder. Selfemployed since the early 60’s, Ray espoused such traditional Cape Breton virtues as independence and hard work, developing a successful plumbing and heating business in Sydney under the name “R. J. Stephens Plumbing and Heating LTD” (Prompt, courteous, dependable service). Ray (as was his way) built his Marion Bridge area bungalow and imagined his mercury-powered speedboat as the fastest on the River. In winter, Ray was unbeatable (yeah right) during family Sunday scrub hockey games on the frozen Mira. In later years, Ray’s skate sharpening skills were the envy of his skating circle at Centre 200. In retirement, Ray led a leisurely life style, tending to his properties, the bungalow, and his usual hands-on with his vehicles.
Ray is survived by his wife, Marie (Ross) and children, Blair, Kevin, Darcy (Lisa), Michele (Chris), Raymond Jr. and Raylene (Bernie); grandchildren, Blair Jr., Anne Marie, Diana, Bradley, Mitchell and Trevor; many great-grandchildren; brother, Ken, and sisters, Marion and Thelma.
Besides his parents, he was predeceased by his brother, Charlie, and sisters, Phyllis, Marjorie, Dorothy, Evelyn, Sylvia and Marie.
There will be no visitation as per Ray’s wishes. Funeral service will be held at Sydney Memorial Chapel on Monday, May 22 at 11 a.m., with Rev. Glen Kent officiating. Interment in Hardwood Hill Cemetery.
Memorials may be made to the Children’s Wish Foundation.
Words of comfort can be sent to the family at www. sydneymemorialchapel.ca or email sydneymemorialchapel@ ns.sympatico.ca.
“You’ll be missed…. kettle is on Ray.”