ROBINS, Iowa – Ray Sullivan, age 83, of Robins, Iowa, died Saturday, May 3, 2014, at his home in Robins. A funeral Mass will be 2 p.m. Friday, May 9, 2014, at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, Cedar Rapids, by Reverend Christopher Podhajsky. Burial with military honors will be in Mt. Calvary Cemetery, Cedar Rapids.
Visitation will be 4-8 p.m. Thursday at Stewart Baxter Funeral and Memorial Services, Cedar Rapids, with a vigil service at 7 p.m.
Please sign the online guest book and share a memory about Ray at www.stewartbaxter.com
Raphael John Sullivan was born July 31, 1930, on a farm near Fairmont, Minn. Ray was married to Judith Primrose Sullivan for 48 years until the time of her death in 2009. Their grandchildren are O’Ryan, Cecelia, Beatrice, Anna, Heath, Gage, Brenna, Fiona, Maeve, Keiran, Henry and Imogene. Ray was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross and the Purple Heart for heroism in the Korean War. Sullivan single-handedly attacked six enemy caves on T-Bone hill.He served in the 45th Infantry Division. Ray was a carpenter for over 50 years, building many homes in Cedar Rapids. Love and joy returned with abundance when Ray was married to Laurna Schlader of Charles City, on Dec. 29, 2012. Laurna and Ray enjoyed being together and spending time with family and friends. Laurna’s children are Maria, Brad, Rod, Brent, Michelle, Geralyn, Mark, along with their spouses and many loving grandchildren. Ray was a Ford man. His classic car collection includes a 1948 Lincoln Continental, which he was restoring. He also enjoyed using his 1947 Allis Chalmers tractor for all sorts of projects around “the ranch.” Ray enjoyed woodworking, making his own lumber from trees felled at “the ranch.” He made his own casket from a walnut tree. It was featured in Ripley’s Believe It or Not, because there were 81 rings on tree, the same age as Ray. He died on a beautiful spring day, working in his wood shop, as his grandsons played in the yard. Moments before he died, Ray was helping his son, John, saw some 2x4s for a home improvement project. As Ray would say, “At least we got that much done.”
Surviving are his children, Mary (David), John (Ashley), Tim (Maren), Mark (Valerie) and Teresa (Peter). Also surviving are his siblings, Mary Margaret, Phil, Paul, Susanne, Tom.