STEPHENS, Ray­mond Joseph

Cape Breton Post - - In Memoriam -

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.”

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