Raymond Larnce Best, 86, of Shelley, Idaho, passed away on Friday, August 2, 2013, at The Gables of Shelley Assisted Living Center.
Ray was born on June 7, 1927, to Walter Joseph Best and Gertrude Marie Lynch Best in Springfield, Illinois. He graduated from Springfield High School and Springfield Business College.
Ray joined the Army Air Corps on March 1, 1946, and was a Veteran of World War II. While in the service, he was stationed at Lowry Field in Denver, Colorado. He was a camera tech and did his training there, after which he was stationed at Langley Field in Virginia.
While stationed in Colorado, Ray met Sherry Lee Boozer. They were married in 1948 at Holy Rosary Catholic Church in Idaho Falls, Idaho. The couple made their home in Springfield, Illinois, and Burlington, Iowa, where he worked for Nabisco. They later moved to Idaho Falls. Ray had seven children and was very active at Holy Rosary Catholic Church and School. He was on the School Board for Holy Rosary Catholic School, Co-President of the PTA and A Fourth Degree Knight in the Knights of Columbus. Ray also belonged to the Exchange Club of Idaho Falls. He and Sherry divorced in 1971.
Ray worked at J.H. Boozer Oil and Lemmon's House Moving as a bookkeeper. He owned and operated Ray's Minit Market and Bergsnieder's RV in Idaho Falls.
Ray loved Island Park and bought property there in 1974. He built a cabin there and in 1993 he made his dream come true and moved there to live full time. He leased and operated the Cow Bell in Island Park and also worked at the Shotgun Store and Restaurant. In 2003 he moved to Shelley, Idaho. Ray loved to camp and spend time with his family and many friends, and will be greatly missed by all.
Ray is survived by his sister, Dorothy Cour of Springfield, Illinois, and his children, Sandra (Regis) Hahn of Idaho Falls, Robert (Cathie) Best of Pasco, Washington, Thomas (Francine) Best of Caldwell, Joseph (Sandra) Best of Shelley, Teresa (Greg) McDonald of Butte, Montana, Charles (Dale) Best of Boise, and Rebecca (Becky) Best of Shelley; his eighteen grandchildren and twenty-one great grandchildren, with two more on the way. He was preceded in death by his parents, Walter and Gertrude Best of Springfield, Illinois and his brothers, Walter, Bill, Geri and Jimmy Best, and sisters, Mary Vespa, Stella Fee and Catherine Best, a grandson, Bryce Fausett Best, and a great-grandson, Carson Hahn.
The family of Ray Best would like to thank Dr. Bradley Stoddard, The staff at The Gables of Shelley, Aspen Home Health and Hospice, the staff at the Salt Lake City VA, The Pocatello Clinic and the Veteran's Administration at St. Paul, Minnesota, for their loving care of our father.
A Funeral Mass will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Friday, August 9, 2013 at Holy Rosary Catholic Church, 145 9th Street in Idaho Falls, with Father Raul Covarrubias, celebrant. A Rosary will be held from 6:00 – 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, with a viewing following from 7:00 – 8:00 p.m. both at Buck-Miller-Hann Funeral Home, 825 E. 17th Street in Idaho Falls. Interment will be in the Shelley-Hillcrest Cemetery in Shelley, Idaho.
In lieu of flowers the family suggests donations be made to The Aspen Foundation for Hospice Care, 3470 Washington Parkway, Idaho Falls, Idaho 83404, or the VA – Military Affairs Committee, c/o Mike McClendor, PO Box 3405, Idaho Falls, Idaho 83402-3405.