November 14, 1950 – August 18, 2020
It is with deep sadness that his family shares the sudden passing of Raymond Norman as the result of a traffic accident in Guelph on Tuesday, August 18th, 2020.
Ray was born in Guelph, Ontario to parents Norman and Elda Bailey on November 14, 1950. As a toddler, his life was permanently changed when he suffered a serious brain injury due to a fall down the stairs at home. Through the excellent care at Sick Kids, the therapy he received at the Rotary Children’s centre and the unwavering support of his family, Ray adapted and met the many challenges that life would bring. With his distinctive gait, he was a familiar sight around Guelph – a city that he knew inside out and loved deeply.
After graduating from Guelph Collegiate, Ray worked at a variety of jobs. A door to door sales position with Fuller Brush gained him a loyal customer base for many years and a love of walking. In later years, he delivered the Guelph Tribune and flyers across the city, pulling his cart with one hand and stopping in at any Tim Hortons for a coffee and a chat with anyone there as he took a break. He made deep and lasting friendships through his long affiliation with AA and through his bowling league. He remembered everyone and was always so excited to share the news about whom he had last seen and chatted with. His annual corn roast and barbeque while he lived on Speedvale Ave. celebrated these friendships and he was happy to welcome all comers and helpers every August. Ray loved to be able to help out and gave back to his community through his volunteer work in the kitchen and dining room at the Evergreen Centre. His friendly lopsided smile, easy laugh and an offer to sit down for a coffee together will be ever so missed.
Friends, family, coffee, food piled high on his plate, dessert, country music, cards, crossword puzzles and watching sports (especially the Guelph Storm) were the biggest pleasures in his life. His move to Norfolk Manor allowed him to indulge in all of those quests and he lived his best life during his time there. Learning new things intrigued him and he was excited to take up the trumpet and play with the New Horizon’s band. Recently, he had mastered his iPad Facetime calls and Zoom meetings as he once again needed to adapt to the realities of life during a COVID pandemic.
Ray is survived by his brothers Ronald (Beth) and Neil (Naideen) and his nephews Brennan (Lisa) and Kevin (Brier) along with his new great nephew, Finnegan. His extended family included numerous families on the Shaw and Bailey sides, along with his large circle of friends in Guelph. He will be especially missed by dear friends John, Pete, Jim, Dan & Sian.
A private family funeral is planned due to the need for ongoing COVID preventive measures. Arrangements entrusted to the WALL-CUSTANCE FUNERAL HOME & CHAPEL, 519-822-0051. Condolences can be sent to the family via the funeral home website below Ray’s notice.
Donations in memory of Ray, to KidsAbility Foundation or New Horizons Band (cheques payable to New Horizons Band Guelph, can be mailed to: 126 Emma St., Guelph, ON N1E 1V3(not for profit entity-no tax receipt will be issued)).
A tree will be planted in memory of Raymond N. Bailey in the Wall-Custance Memorial Forest, University of Guelph Arboretum.