Ray Lloyd Downing, age 80, of Vickery, died unexpectedly Tuesday, February 25, 2020, at University Hospital in Cleveland.
He was born December 15, 1939, in Sandusky, to Raymond and Florence (Knauer) Downing. Ray graduated from Margaretta High School in 1957.
Ray was a life-long farmer, small business owner, community volunteer and musician. He opened Downing Billiards & Trophy in 1959. After selling the business he worked as an estimator for Erie Blacktop until retirement. Along with farming, Ray loved music. He and Carol, his loving wife of nearly 60 years, had the Velva Tones, a local dance band for many years and Ray was a keen saxophone player.
His community involvement included being an active member of the Castalia Lion's Club - Past President, 4-H Advisor of the Townsend Blue Ribbon Boys, Firelands Pioneer Power Club - President, S.C.R.A.P., Huron County Farm Club, and LaGrange Tractor & Engine Club. He was also a Life Member of the National FFA Alumni Association. He served as chairman of the Castalia Cold Creek Celebration for many years.
Along with being an antique tractor collector, who displayed his collection of John Deere B's at tractor shows over the years, he was also a skilled woodworker. He has made many family heirlooms, restored pool tables and assisted his children & grandchildren with keepsake projects.
Survivors include his wife, Carol (Stewart) Downing of 59 years; their children, Mark (Kari) Downing, Tami (James) Schaufler, and Sherry (Mark) Bodey, all of Castalia; Holly (Doug) Stacy of Old Fort; and Rana (Tim) Fredrick of Vickery. Grandchildren Tana Bond, Tevan Nickle, Tad Downing, Trent Downing; Lauren Flew and Collin Schaufler; Kisha Genter and Kalie Mahnke; Dean Stacy and Diana Podach; Korey, Kodey, Kalup and Kristohper Lyons. Great grandchildren Kenley, Camden, Brayden, Ty, Myles, Wyatt, Jaycee, Ava, Ali, Alec, Ames, Harper, Owen, RayLynn, Marshall and River. Step great grandchildren Cassie, Caden and Colt. Siblings brother Tom Downing of Delaware, Ohio, sisters Ellen Schibley and Jean Scheid of Monroeville.
Ray was preceded in death by his parents, infant brother Donald, brother-in-laws William Schibley and Myron Scheid, sister-in-law Gail Downing, and grandparents Edwin & Nellie Downing.
Friends may call from 4 - 8 PM on Monday, March 2, 2020 at Ransom Funeral & Cremation Service, 610 S.Washington St., Castalia, where the Castalia Lions Club will conduct their memorial service at 8 PM. Friends may also call from 10 AM until start of services at 11 AM at Sandusky Church of the Nazarene, 1617 Milan Road, Sandusky, on Tuesday, March 3, 2020. Pastor David Flack will officiate. Burial will be in Castalia Cemetery.
Memorial contributions may be made to the School of Hope 1001 Castalia St. Fremont, OH 43420, Margaretta Rescue Squad, 113 South Ave., Castalia, OH 44824, or to Ones favorite charity. Online condolences and gifts of sympathy may be shared with the family by visiting www.ransomfuneralhome.com
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Margaretta Township Rescue Squad
113 South Ave., Castalia OH 44824
School of Hope
1001 Castalia St, Fremont OH 43420