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After a courageous battle with cancer, Raymond R. Coderre died peacefully on April 18, 2019 in Ormond Beach, Florida at the age of 73. He was an honest, ethical and dedicated community member. He leaves behind his beloved wife of 51 years, former State Representative Elaine Coderre; his children whom he was so proud of, Bob Coderre and his wife Neicy, former State Senator Tom Coderre, Karen Barber and her husband Calvin; his six cherished grandchildren, Joey, Hannah, Jack, David, Calvin and Sashi; and his great granddaughter Elora Grace. Family was everything to him and he sacrificed much to make sure his children had a better life than he did.
Ray was born on August 21, 1945 in Providence to Russell and Emily Coderre, who both predeceased him. He grew up in a working class neighborhood in Pawtucket with his three brothers, Joe, Bill and Paul. He graduated Saint Raphael Academy in 1963 where he played football and spring track. He served six years in the Rhode Island National Guard and received an honorable discharge as a Specialist 4th Class. His assignments included Select Reserve Force Combat Engineer, the 118th Dump Truck Support Group, working in the motor pool, working at Camp Varnum, and building Buck Hill in Burrillville.
His first jobs were at Burger Chef in East Providence and Providence Braid Company however, most of his professional career was spent at the Jewelers Board of Trade where he was a business analyst for nearly 30 years. He was active in the National Association of Credit Mangers and was voted credit executive of the year in 1992. His favorite jobs were Newport Creamery where he was a store manger from 1968-1975 and the Rhode Island Auditor General’s Office where he was an auditor. While he started at Bryant University after graduating high school, he left due to family responsibilities. After raising his children, he returned to earn his Bachelor of Science degree in 1989 majoring in marketing. He was the first in his family to graduate from high school or college.
Ray was very active in his local community and was a member of the Junior Chamber of Commerce where he became the President of the Pawtucket Jaycees and District Director for the Rhode Island Jaycees. He received many local, regional and national awards including induction into the Unied States Jaycees Hall of Fame in 1981. However, his most treasured achievement was being named JCI Senator #27406 and life member in 1979, the highest honor that can be bestowed upon a member by Junior Chamber International for outstanding service to the organization. He was also a member of the Knights of Columbus – Father Eamonn Gill Council 13018 at St. Brendan – the Navigator – Catholic Church in Ormond Beach and previously Delaney Council 57 in Pawtucket.
He was a fan of New England sports teams, especially the Boston Red Sox, the Pawsox and the New England Patriots. He and his wife vacationed every year at Sunrise Beach Club in Daytona Beach and chose to retire there in 2015. In retirement, he enjoyed attending the Daytona Tortugas baseball games, playing in the Greater Daytona Beach Senior Softball League, spending time at the YMCA, Senior Center and attending concerts, lectures and other events in the local area. He also continued to be active in the JCI Senate and attended meetings, conventions and other activities throughout Florida and on the east coast.
A memorial service will be held Friday, May 3rd at 5:45pm in St. Joseph Church at Holy Family Parish, 195 Walcott Street, Pawtucket. Family will greet visitors beginning at 5pm. A collation will be held immediately following the service in the church hall. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence, 422 Post Rd #102, Warwick, RI 02888. Baldwin Brothers Funeral & Cremation Society of Central & Southwest Florida is handling arrangements.