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Ray Kinnison

Wednesday, November 27, 2019
Ray Kinnison

Ray Kinnison, 83, passed in peace and left this earth on November 20, 2019, in Olton. Memorial services were held at 10:30, Tuesday, November 26, 2019, at the First United Methodist Church in Olton under the direction of Ramage Funeral Directors.

Ray will be long remembered. He was a light that shined bright and knowing Ray made your life just a little bit better. Ray was born in Dawson County, on May 7, 1936, to Raymond and Lucille Kinnison. He was the first of seven children, and though his family struggled financially, Ray learned at a young age the importance of a job well done. This was something demanded of him, and it stuck throughout his life. Growing up, Ray discovered he was a natural athlete, and that ability provided him with opportunities. After high school, Ray played college basketball and football. He ended up at Eastern New Mexico University in 1957, where he led his football team to an undefeated season as a Hall of Honors player. But football wasn’t his greatest accomplishment. That year he met the love of his life Barbara (Bo) Bogard, who was working at the student union. She was then, and until the day he died, the light of Ray’s life. He carried her heart in his heart. Ray and Bo married in August of 1958, and they had two girls, Kim and Dusty. The 3 girls in Ray’s life completed him. He was ferociously loyal and loving. If you “messed with them; you messed with him.” After college, Ray began a successful coaching career in Portales, NM. In 1969, he moved to Olton, where he was a coach, teacher, principal, and later superintendent. In each role, Ray was a dedicated and strong leader. He had an energy about him that made others feel safe. He was a motivator and a mover and shaker. His word was his bond. He understood what it meant to struggle, and the opportunities education provides. As an educator, every kid counted in Ray’s book. He believed that, and kids felt that. Ray continued to touch lives after he left Olton, in the position of superintendent in his hometown of Seagraves and then later as interim superintendent at Wilson ISD. Those who knew Ray well also knew about his love of golf. Golf meant a lot of things to Ray. Golf was a challenge. He loved the competition, the comradery, the joking, the fun, and the thrill of winning. Golf was Ray’s release. Those who played with him often knew that this “release” might be a few colorful words or a broken putter or two. The love of the game stayed with Ray throughout most of his life. It brought him true joy. As a father, Pa Pa, and later great grandpa, Ray was extraordinary. Those he loved got the very best of him. He was the kind of man who gave you strength, confidence, unconditional love, and unwavering loyalty. He had the keen ability to make those he loved feel like the most important person in the room. He knew what to say and when to say it. He saw, grew, and demanded the best from his kids and grandkids. He liked to play a joke or two on them too. If Ray thought he could scare one of them, that became his mission. Even the great grands called him Scary Pa Pa, a name in which he proudly wore as a badge of honor. As Ray left this earth, he carved his name on our hearts. His legacy is etched into our minds and woven into the stories we share. He lives on in our memories and in our laughter. His story is a life well lived!

Ray is survived and loved deeply by his wife Barbara, his daughters Kim Huseman and Dusty Precure, their husbands Royce Huseman and Doug Precure, five grandchildren and their spouses, Dustin Precure and his wife Lacey, Tima Huseman, and her husband BJ Olonilua, Kolby Huseman and his wife Christie, BJ Precure and her husband Brenton Green, and Colin Huseman and his fiancé Molly. He has seven great-grandchildren Marlie, Mallorie, and Jase Green, Lincoln Pre-cure, Charlie and Ray Olonilua, and Levi Huseman. He also has two brothers, Melvin and Donnie Kinnison, and three sisters Barbara Arnold, Jean Ingram, and Jane Miller, and many in-laws, nieces and nephews as well as grandnieces, grandnephews, and great-grands.

He is preceded in death by his parents, his sweet niece Nan, and very recently, his dear brother Freddie.

The family suggests memorials be made to the Runningwater Draw Care Center, PO Box 409, Olton, Texas 79064.

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