11 March 2010

RIP: Mary Josephine Ray

Mary Josephine Ray (née Arsenault)
17 May 1895 – 7 March 2010

The second-oldest person in the world has died. ZUI this article from the Keene (NH) Sentinel:
Even at 114, Mary J. Ray was a woman known to belt out a tune with gusto — anytime, anywhere.

Among the top songs in the Westmoreland resident’s repertoire was a rousing rendition of “Take Me Out to the Ball Game,” sung in honor of her beloved Red Sox.


Ray, who had been listed as the oldest living American and the second oldest person in the world since September, died peacefully Sunday morning at Maplewood Nursing Home in Westmoreland.

Hers was a life spanning the election of 21 presidents, the introduction of six U.S. states, both world wars and American women gaining the right to vote.


Born May 17, 1895, in Bloomfield, Prince Edward Island, Canada, Ray was one of seven children.

She moved to the U.S. at three, and by 15 had lost both parents.

She took a job as a housekeeper and store clerk, and in 1923 married Walter R. Ray.

The couple had two sons, Robert B. Ray and Donald K. Ray, and lived in Anson, Maine, for 60 years.


She had eight grandchildren, 13 great-grandchildren and five great-great-grandchildren.

Ray is the 33d supercentenarian listed by the Gerontology Research Group (GRG) to die since the death of Gertrude Baines on 11 September 2009. 11 of the others were residents of the United States.

The GRG's list of validated living supercentenarians (people who have reached their 110th birthday) currently includes 75 people (3 men and 72 women), ranging from Kama Chinen of Japan (born 10 May 1895) to Domenica Di Tomasso-Ciccheli of Italy (born 11 Feb 1900). The oldest person in the United States is now Neva Morris of Iowa (born 3 Aug 1895), the world's second-oldest person; 20 other supercentenarians live in the US, though none are in New Hampshire.

No comments: