Ray Nichols passed away on August 11, 2019 at the age of 73. He was predeceased by his parents Mary Janes and Lloyd Nichols. Ray is survived by his loving wife Bev of 53 years and three sisters, Sharon Semm, Anita Nichols Cantelmo (Cecil) and Lynne Thomas. He is survived by many nieces, nephews and cousins.
Ray was a superconnector, a sense-maker, a builder of human infrastructure,an inimitable and prolifically talented lobbyist for the marginalized and the overlooked. For nearly 30 years, from May 1983 to December 2012, Ray served on the Board of Directors for Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Louisiana, spearheading a program in housekeeping training that resulted in the creation of hundreds of jobs for the physically or developmentally disabled. He spent 24 of those years also actively volunteering for the United Way. Ray was especially proud of his work as a founding board member of Priestly Charter School and serving as president of Maple Area Residents Inc. (MARI) in 2004.
“Ray was a great friend to me and in the trenches with neighborhood leaders throughout the city,” wrote New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell. “He was a tireless advocate for what he believed was important, and a dedicated philanthropist.” Ray always said, “If it were easy, everybody’d be doing it.” “Just sayin”. JACOB SCHOEN & SON FUNERAL HOME, 3827 Canal Street, New Orleans, LA 70119 in charge of arrangements. Condolences may be expressed at www.schoenfh.com
Friends of Ray! Bev has arranged for a Memorial Celebration on Saturday, August 24, 2019 at The Jazz Market, on the corner of Martin Luther King Blvd., at 1436 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd. from 4:00 until 8:00 pm. Valet parking provided. Wear your hats! Bring your memories and stories. In lieu of flowers please make a donation in Ray’s name to Lowernine.org and the Lens (thelensnola.org)
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