Wednesday, July 18, 2012
Even though Ray Minner is no longer a part of the Collegedale community, he won’t soon be forgotten.
The active Collegedale Seventh-day Adventist Church member, who unexpectedly passed away July 3, was known around the city for the blood drives he led, the announcing he did on WSMC-FM during church services, the Sabbath school class he taught and his love of local and national politics.
“Ray cared about this community probably more so than just about anybody,” said Collegedale for Tomorrow Advisory Board Chairman David Barto. “We’re all going to miss him, and it’s going to be a little lonelier around here without anyone to talk politics with.”
He said he would call Minner, an educator at Collegedale Academy and a supporter of Southern Adventist University, every week or two just to talk politics for an hour or so. But the thing Barto said he appreciated most was Minner’s commitment and leadership in the community.
“There was no better supporter than Ray,” he said. “Even if people didn’t always agree with him on politics or things of that nature they could never deny that. And people always said, ‘Good grief, that guy teaches a good Sabbath school.’”
Wolf Jedamski, Collegedale Seventh-day Adventist Church’s director of global missions and a neighbor of the Minners, said he will miss Minner’s enthusiasm most of all.
“Ray was thorough and very enthusiastic about whatever he participated in,” he said. “Ray wouldn’t do anything unless he could put everything behind it.”
Jedamski said Minner will be especially missed at the church, where he was influential in the leading regular blood drives, and during his service helped provide many pints of blood to the local blood bank.
“On the morning of a blood drive you would always see Ray with a big smile on his face and his clipboard,” he said. “He was always running back and forth joking with people and encouraging them to donate.”
Minner is survived by his wife, Laurie Redmer Minner; daughters, Jennifer Payne, Megan Minner and Katie Partlo; son, Caleb; and two grandchildren.