Doug Ray
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Doug Ray, age 61, of Yankton, South Dakota, died Friday, July 4, 2014 at Avera Sacred Heart Hospital in Yankton, surrounded by his family.

Funeral services are 10:30 AM, on Tuesday, July 8, 2014 at Trinity Lutheran Church in Yankton with Reverend David Wildermuth officiating. Burial will be in the Vangen Cemetery in rural Mission Hill, South Dakota. Visitation is from 5:00 to 8:00 PM, on Monday, July 7 at Trinity Lutheran Church with a prayer service at 7:00 PM. Arrangements are under the direction of the Wintz & Ray Funeral Home and Cremation Service in Yankton.

Pallbearers are Bill Arens, Kevin Buckman, Todd Hecht, Mike Johnson, Larry Nickles and Brad Parker. Honorary pallbearers are Doug's fellow coworkers of the Yankton Emergency Services.

Doug was born May 10, 1953 in Yankton, South Dakota to Robert and Luella (Grage) Ray. He grew up near Mission Hill at the WNAX transmitter site where his dad was the engineer. Doug graduated from Yankton High School in 1971 and then attended Yankton College. He married Leann Johnson in 1977 and together had two sons, Dave and Robbie. On September 27, 1986, Doug and Susan Repp were married and six years later, their daughter, Heather was born. Doug worked for the Yankton County EMS for nearly 25 years, first as a part time volunteer, then in a full time position and finally as a paramedic. He also was a member of the Volunteer Fire Department and the Search and Rescue Unit. For the last four years, Doug was a driver and dispatcher for Yankton Transit. Doug loved the outdoors where he enjoyed hunting, fishing, boating and golfing. He loved watching sports, especially his favorite teams, the Denver Broncos and Minnesota Twins. But most of all, he loved watching his daughter, Heather, play. Doug was a tall man with a big heart and gentle spirit. He always went out of his way to help others and enjoyed visiting with people. He loved his wife and children and was proud of all of them. He cherished the time spent with them and his grandchildren.

Doug is survived by his wife, Susan Ray of Yankton; three children: Dave Ray of Pierre, SD, Robbie (Katie) Ray of Gayville, SD and Heather Ray of Yankton; and two grandchildren, Makiya and Robert Jr.

Doug was preceded in death by his parents and two brothers, Alan and Stan Ray.


Messages will be reviewed and posted within 1 business day.

Our thoughts are with you at this time. Doug is a beautiful soul and will be greatly missed. Hugs and prayers to you all.

Patty & Jim

Dear Ray Family,

I was shocked to hear of Doug's passing. I met Doug in the early 1980's when I moved to Yankton and we played amateur baseball together for the Yankton Lakers. Throughout the 20+ year that I lived in Yankton Doug always took time to say hello and take a few minutes to catch up when we met on the street. He was a genuine and truly nice guy. He will be missed by all who knew him. My thoughts and prayers are with all of you and Doug. May God bless you all.

Tony Simons - Zumbrota, Minnesota

My brother-in-law has gone much too soon!I will miss you Big Guy!!We all will gather around your family and do our best to help them walk this unexpected journey. Life is a mystery, but one thing I know for sure , you were loved each and everyday!

Jane Repp

I was so sad to hear that Doug had passed on. Doug saved my life when I was just an infant and I'm not sure I was ever able to express how thankful I was to him. It was a story that has been told and retold to me over and over again throughout the years. I grew up always knowing that I was very blessed to have had the chance to live and I owe that to Doug. I am so terribly so for your loss and I hope that knowing that someone appreciates the man he was and the great thing he did brings you some comfort during this difficult time. Prayers and blessings.

Cassie Moderegger

What a sad day in Yankton ... a wonderful friend with a smile always on his face, willing to help others at no expense ... when Doug stepped out of the ambulance to assist with my father, I knew dad was in good, caring hands! Doug will forever be missed ~ Sue, we are all praying for you and your family. Be strong and know someday you will be together again. You are all in our prayers!

Jodi (Keegan), Brad and Nathan List

Sue & family,

Let me offer my sincerest sympathies for your loss. Doug was an awesome person who will be greatly missed by all who knew him. He always had a smile and a kind word for everyone. I know he loved you all immensely.

Jackie Hovden

Our thoughts and prayers are with you in your time of loss. My God give you comfort.

Joe and Laurie LaBarge

Farewell Doug, may you play baseball on the heavenly field now.

Pat Kollars

ruth and I have a long history with the ray family,starting with doug's dad bob. he was my scout master in the early 50s,ruth worked with doug's mom at school...we went with doug's brothers to high school allen and stan...and all along we kept a close eye on young doug..cb radio times,emts and my last encounter at yankton transit where doug was an out standing dispatcher...a kind word for his fellow drivers and riders.we talked often of his family and what they did ...he loved them very much...ruth and I wish God's love to doug and his family,we will miss the BIG GUY.....ED AND RUTH HIGHLAND

Sue and Family

We were so sorry to hear of Doug's death, our friendship with him goes way back to the first EMT classes held. Smile and remember all the good times. A very special angel now keeps you all protected.

Kathi and Steve Larson

I am so very sorry for your loss. I know there is a huge hole in your hearts that will never be filled, and you are in my prayers.

Fran Livingston

I am so sorry to hear about this loss , I will never forget his nice smile and big wave I would get whenever I would happen to pass him driving. A Big Man with a BIGGER heart. I am sad to hear about this .... God Bless all of his family

Meagan Dooley

My deepest sympathies to Doug's family. Yankton has truly lost a true and dear person. Doug was always ready to help anyone , and always with that sweet smile behind it. Doug and I go way back, EMT classes and ambulance calls . I was on Lesterville Fire and Rescue ,and will never forget the times he would always give me a hard time, one in particular when he had everyone thinking I gave him a bloody nose !! He was a special person and now heaven will be brighter, leaving a lot of hearts with holes in them here. my thoughts and prayers are with you! God Bless

Donna Mutschelknaus

Sincere sympathy in the loss of your father. You are in our prayers.

Larry and Peg Hamberger

Dave and Robbie,

I am so sorry for your loss. Just know that I am praying for you both and may God be with you during this sorrowful time.

Corey and Liz Kramer

My thoughts and prayers are with you all. He was a great man and will be greatly missed. He was always so friendly and kind to the people that where on the transit. He always very patient and always had a smile on his face.

Amy Brock-Chang

Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this very sad time. Doug did have a big heart and this community is better off for his having been here. He will truly be missed!

Chip, Ann and Gabby Horton

Our thoughts and prayers to your family. He really was a super nice guy and always smiled and waved whenever we saw him.

Jim, Leann, Jesse and Michelle Bicknell

Robbie and family:

So sorry to hear of the passing of your loved one. He is at peace and suffering no longer. Our thoughts and prayers are will all of you at this sad time.

Gerri Guenther, Phyllis White & Doug Davis

Our thoughts and prayers are with all of your family Sue. Doug was a wonderful person who will be missed by all. Take care and remember all the good times.

Mike and Maureen Staniech

Dear Susan, Robbie, David and Heather,

I was shocked when I got the news about Doug's passing ! As I'm sure you know the EMS community is a very close knit family, and it doesn't take long for news to travel. You all have my deepest sympathy in this difficult time. My prayers will be with your family. I'm very thankful of all the memories, and the community has definitely lost a shining star.

Daryl Michael NREMT-P

My thoughts and prayers are with the whole family. I remember playing volleyball with Doug, when you where beside him , you ducked under him. I remember when you played baseball for my dad. Doug did so many wonderful things. You would always see him at volleyball, basketball and soccer. A big guy like Doug is unreplaceable. What an angel to watch over all of you, you will notice that. God bless all of you.

Betty Granflaten and family

Dear Sue,

In trying to connect with you on Facebook just moments ago, I happened upon Doug's Facebook page. Our hearts are hurting for you and we send our deepest sympathy, prayers, and thoughts to you and your family. May warm memories and hope bring you peace. It is quite evident by reading Doug's memorial, people's Sympathy Messages, and watching the video that Doug made the world a better place.

Patti and Tom Jackson

Sue and family,

You have our deepest sympathy in the passing of Doug. He was very well liked and a fun person. He will be missed by many.

Loran & Kathy Tramp

Sue, Dave, Robbie, and Heather

Doug always had a great big smile on his face for as long as I can remember. My deepest sympathy to all of you. May God Comfort and Guide You!

Carol Pickering Schulz

My deepest sympathy to the Ray family. Doug is sitting at Gods right hand now. He free of pain and sorrow. I could tell by his smile he had a great big heart.

Kathy Norris

Sue and the Ray family,

Our deepest condolences go to you during this tragic time. Our family has known your family since I can remember. It was a pure blessing to have been able to work with Doug and to have received numerous upon numerous times of needing his service as a Medic. His heart was huge and knew he would give his all. I will alway remember no natter how long it had been since I last saw him he would always remember me. Such a huge loss from a large man with an even larger heart. Thought and prayers,

Russell Terri Tschetter

May you find peace and comfort during this time. All my sympathies for you and your family.

Stacy (Wray) McKinney

I just learned of Doug's passing and am very saddened. I played amateur baseball with Doug back in the 1970's and always enjoyed him as a teammate and person. He was kind and generous and had a great sense of humor. I send my sincere sympathy to Doug's family as I know he will be greatly missed.

Todd Henseler

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