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William Ray Gonsalves, known affectionately as Ray to his friends and loved ones, passed away peacefully on January 25, 2024 at home with his family. Ray was born on November 29, 1956 in Fukushima-Ken, Japan, and brought joy, laughter, and a spirit of generosity to all who knew him throughout his 67 years.
Ray attended Manchester High School, where he was known for his quick wit and easy smile. After graduation, he dedicated a portion of his life to serving his country as a proud member of the United States Marine Corps. His service was a testament to his selfless nature and his unwavering commitment to the principles he held dear. Following his military service, Ray built a successful career as a skilled contractor, where his true passion was concrete work.
Family was the cornerstone of Ray's life. He was a father, Ojiisan (Grandfather), brother, uncle and friend. He was pre-deceased by his mother and best friend Masae Saur, as well as his younger brother and one grandchild. He leaves behind a loving family. The legacy of Ray's kind spirit, zest for life, and sense of humor will live on in the hearts of his family.
Ray's interests were as diverse as his talents. He had an enduring love for music, which was a constant source of joy and inspiration in his life. A true enthusiast of cars, he could often be found tinkering, restoring the old to new glory. His passion for antiques and collectibles was more than just a hobby—it was a way of connecting with the past and preserving history. Ray's playful side came out in full force when he played Call of Duty with his grandsons, a time that was filled with laughter.
His love for picking was not just about finding treasures; it was about the thrill of the hunt and the stories that came with every find.
Those who knew Ray will remember him as a man who lived with passion and purpose. He approached every day with a sense of humor that could light up a room and a selfless nature that made everyone feel important. His ability to connect with people from all walks of life was a rare gift that made him not just memorable but truly beloved.
As we say goodbye to Ray, we celebrate a life lived fully and with great love. Ray's memory will be cherished and kept alive by the stories we share, the love we carry in our hearts, and the smiles that come so easily when we think of him.
A life so freely lived like Ray’s deserves to be beautifully remembered. As we honor his memory, let us reflect on the happiness he brought into our lives and the lessons he taught us, simply by being the extraordinary person he was.
Visitation will take place at Manchester Funeral Home, 142 E Center Street, Manchester, CT on Monday, January 29, 2024 from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM. A funeral service will be held on Tuesday, January 30, 2024 at Holmes Watkins Funeral Home, 400 Main Street, Manchester, CT from 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM, followed by burial with military honors at East Cemetery, 220 E Center Street, Manchester, CT.