April 16, 1932 ~ December 14, 2020
Born in: Lynchburg, VA
Resided in: Webster, NY
Ray Thurmond Oglesby, age 88, passed away from complications related to COVID-19 at Maplewood Nursing Home in Webster NY on December14, 2020. Ray is survived by his 3 children, Lisa (Roderick) Oglesby Rocha of Dallas, TX, Scott (Nancy) Oglesby of Hillsborough, NC, and Karen (John) Wagner of Rochester NY and his 6 grandchildren, Maria Oglesby of Alhambra, CA, Mark Oglesby of Hillsborough, NC, Ray Wagner of Salt Lake City, UT, Clara Wagner of Northhampton, MA, David Oglesby of Wilmington, NC, and Chantel Torrey of Seattle WA.
Ray was born in Lynchburg, Virginia, the youngest of 4 children. He attended the University of Richmond for his undergraduate and M.S degree. Ray then served in the Navy from 1955 to 1958. Ray attended UNC Chapel Hill where he received his doctorate in Sanitary Engineering based on his research into the environmental effects of DDT. He received a teaching post and eventually a tenure-track position at the University of Washington, Seattle, WA and then went on to accept a tenure-track position at Cornell University in 1968. He rose to the level of Chairman of the Department of Natural Resources and was a faculty representative on the Cornell Presidential Council. Towards the end of his career he advised on global climate change and third world environmental issues. He retired from Cornell in 1995 as a Professor Emeritus.
Ray was a lifelong lover of nature and scientific inquiry. He volunteered for nearly 20 years in Ithaca with Hospicare & Palliative Care as “The Pancake Man”. He was an ombudsman as part of his advocacy for the elderly at several Ithaca retirement communities. He also had a significant role in the Finger Lakes Land Trust which mirrored his passion to protect the land for the enjoyment of future generations.
After his volunteer work and travel to interesting places. he moved to Rochester NY in 2012. He initially lived at Rivers Run where he discovered a talent and passion for painting outdoor nature scenes. He also lived at Cloverwood Senior Living before transitioning to Maplewood Nursing Home where he received excellent care and loving attention.
Ray will be dearly missed for his kind and generous spirit. He was someone who guided and supported those he touched in a myriad of ways and he will continue to add positive energy to our universe.
In lieu of flowers, Ray would have appreciated you taking a walk in nature, or doing something kind for someone else and to keep on smiling, and to contribute positively to this world – because that was the “Ray Way”. Given the current COVID pandemic, the family will have a small private green burial and will plan for a memorial service this summer when the pandemic allows. Condolences may be offered at https://meesonfamily.com/obits/ray-t-oglesby/.