Raymond's Story

BREWER AND OLD TOWN - Raymond George Spruce, His late wife Sarah Jane always called him Raymond, but most people knew him as Ray. Born December 29, 1923, he was the oldest son

of Essie White and Raymond Joseph Spruce. He graduated from Milford Grammar School and from Old Town High School Class of 1941. A member of the second graduating class of Maine

Maritime Academy, Castine, Maine, served his country during WWl1. He was twice a veteran, serving in the U.S. Merchant Marine in the Atlantic and in the Mediterranean Theater as well as in the South Pacific with the Navy. Awarded the Merchant Combat star, Ray remained in the Naval Reserve, achieving the rank of Lieutenant Commander before retiring in 1972.

Ray and his brother David inherited the family business, RJ Spruce & Sons, Milford, Maine, where he had worked since he was a boy. Except for his annual Naval Reserve service, Ray

missed only a single day of work in the store. Foreseeing the demise of the local grocer, he closed the store in the early sixties and began a new career at The State Department of Health and Welfar. It was work that he loved, and he was a respected mentor to several colleagues. Public service came naturally to him. He was a lifelong Democrat and served 2 terms on the Old

Town City Council. He was also a lifetime member of The Knights of Columbus.

He spent his life quietly caring for those around him, his very colorful mother-in-law, Harriet Mabel White, the customers who frequented Spruces' General Store, the DHS clients in

Penobscot and Piscataquis Counties, his wife and the eight cherished children.

Raymond and Sarah took one memorable trip to Italy. After retirement they spent time in Texas, Illinois and Florida. They had a camp at Boozy Point, Pushaw Pond, where they entertained

family and friends who also summered there.

Raymond's beloved wife Sarah Jane passed on April 14, 2007 after 63 years of marriage. Their daughter Catherine Spruce Graves died in September 2010. Reaching ninety on his last birthday, Ray suffered in recent years the loss of most of his contemporaries, the

cousins he grew up with, the men and women with whom he shared the experience of World War II. He is survived by seven children, Margaret Morehouse, Anne LaBree, Tabitha King, Christopher Spruce, Thomas Spruce, Stephanie Leonard and Marcella Spruce, their spouses, and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

He is also survived by his sister, Jeanne Spruce Kendall, his brother, David Spruce, and sister-in-law Helga Cross and brother-in-law Fred White and several nieces, nephews and cousins

as well as dear friends, Charles & Ellen Stevens, Frances Trefts, Marion Harris, Ron & Judy Highbarger, Alice & Bill McGowan.

Ray had two beloved poodles Stella, aka Fudd and Willie. He will be sorely missed by his current pal Bosco.

Relatives and friends are invited to call from 5-7pm Sunday June 1, 2014 at Brookings-Smith 133 Center St., Bangor. A funeral Mass will be held at St. Paul the Apostle Parish, St. John's Catholic Church, 207 York Street, Bangor on Monday, June 2, 2014 at 11:00am followed by the Rite of Committal at Mt. Hope Cemetery, Bangor. The family invites relatives and friends to share conversation and refreshments at the Family Reception Center of Brookings and Smith, 163 Center St, Bangor following the internment. Gifts in Raymond's memory may be made to St. Joseph Hospital Chapel, 360 Broadway Bangor, Maine 04401. Condolences to the family may be expressed at www.BrookingsSmith.com.
Published in Bangor Daily News
Services by

Brookings-Smith Funeral Home

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