Date of death: 3/21/2015

Saint Meinrad Class: O 1967

MSGT. Raymond F. Boyden, Jr., 73 yrs., 9 mos., and 21 days, of Savannah, Georgia, USAF retired, passed away Saturday, March 21, 2015, at St. Joseph’s Hospital, of complications following a stroke. Ray (aka Bear, Bones, Curly, Vati, Opa, Mr. B, Big Daddy, Dad, or Pop) was born in Florence Crittenton Hospital on 30 May 1941, at 11:28 AM, in Detroit, Michigan to Raymond F. Boyden, Sr. and Harriet L. Deibel. He spent his early years in Detroit and attended Kindergarten there about 1945/46. In January 1947 the family moved to Columbus, Ohio where Ray attended sundry elementary schools, among them Holy Rosary elementary school (Columbus, OH) and Christ the King. By August 1949, the family had relocated to Junction City, Ohio where he finished elementary school at Junction City Elementary in June 1955. At the beginning of his high school career, Ray thought of becoming a priest and attended the minor seminary at St. Meinrad Seminary and School of Theology in southern Indiana but left in Oct 1957. Ray graduated from Holy Trinity High School (Somerset, Ohio) in June 1959.Shortly after high school graduation, on 03 Dec 1959, Ray enlisted in the United States Air Force. In March 1960, he went to the Russian Language School at Indiana University in Bloomington, IN. He then trained with the 6944th Student Squadron to become a Linguist- Voice Intercept Processing Specialist (AFSC 20351-MA-MJ) at Goodfellow AFB, Texas. By April 1961 he was serving with the 6980th Radio Squadron Mobile (USAFSS) in Northeast Cape, Alaska. In April 1962, Ray studied German at the German Language School at Syracuse University, NY before being sent to his first overseas duty station to serve with the 6915th Radio Squadron Mobile (USAFSS) at Hof Air Station in Oberfranken, Germany. After a short stint stateside with the Ohio ANG as a Small Arms Instructor and studies at Ohio State University, Ray went back to Hof Air Station in June 1966 as a Russian/German Linguist with the 2915th Security Group. He met his future wife, Roswitha, in Stammbach; they were wed 12 Jan 1968 in Stammbach. In March 1968, he went on with his new bride to serve with 7473rd Combat Support Group (USAFE) at Mor+ªn AB in Andalusia, Spain as Small Arms Combat Instructor (AFSC 75330). Between 1970 and 1978, Ray had 3 more stateside duty stations before returning to Germany on last time: Wright-Patterson AFB, Tinker AFB, OK, and at Robins AFB, GA. He served the rest of his Air Force career in West Germany, and returned to Ohio after he retired from active duty in the mid-1980’s.For nearly half a century, Ray served his country as a Russian/German Linguist- Voice Intercept Process Specialist and Combat Arms Training and Maintenance Technician/Superintendent in the US Air Force; with the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (Firearms Division) he was the firearms and ammunition coordinator; and with the 1st Ranger Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, he served for 20 years as their gunsmith. He was trained at Barrett and several other schools and factories, including FN-Columbia, SC, Remington, S&W, Ruger, Beretta, H&K (Germany), Carl Gustav (Sweden). He also was the lead Army civilian gunsmith for many weapons, initially used only by the Army Rangers, but are now used universally in the US Armed Forces. Ray was also the author of many military TM/TO’s (Army Tech Manual/ Air Force Tech Order) and a contributor on many civilian books and articles. He was highly knowledgeable about, and an expert on, several classes of civilian and military weapons/firearms, having spent the past 56+ years working in gunsmithing and firearms use.Ray was preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Paul Boyden and Michael Boyden; sister, Scholastica ; grandson, Raymond S. Schulz; brothers-in-law, Glenn Thorne, Eddie Ransome Hall, Robert Stough, G++nter Jork, and Wolfgang Jork; mother-in-law, Hedwig (nee Gebauer) Urbanek; father-in-law, Richard K. Jork.He is survived by his beloved wife of 47 years, Roswitha (nee Gebauer) Boyden; son Frederick (Roxana) Boyden; his daughters, Barbara (Matthew) Bishop and Veronica Boyden; grandchildren, Ella, William, and Freyja Boyden; Isabella and Matthew Bishop, and Evan and Emma Schultz; brothers, Daniel (Sharon), David (Millie), John (Judy), Stephen (Sheree), and Thomas; sisters, Anne (Francis) Brown, Mary (Dick) Saegert, Patricia Thorne, Catherine (Dean) Dickson, Julia Stough, and Elizabeth Boyden; brother-in-Law, Werner (Crystal) Urbanek; sisters-in-Law, Irmgard (nee Jork) Large, Karin (nee Bu+â) Jork, Pirom (nee Panchana) Boyden, Jewel (nee Howard) Boyden; uncles, Joseph (Norma) Deibel, Jr., David Deibel, Sr., Stephen (Mary) Deibel, and many nieces, nephews, and friends.Ray was a deeply faithful man and was a member of St. Frances Cabrini Catholic Church since moving to the Savannah area in the fall of 1988. He was very active in the church and served as lector and sang in the contemporary choir. He was a member of the Knights of Columbus; a life-long supporter of the Boy Scouts of America, he served as Scout Master of Troop 219 in Darien, GA; he was an avid reader, a lover of music of almost all genres, and played the drums in his youth. He had a great love of knowledge and learning and was always striving to do so. He attended Armstrong State College and studied English. He also spoke many languages fluently including German, Russian, and French. He had a good working knowledge of Latin – albeit dead, as well as Spanish and Italian; he loved studying languages and began to learn Irish Gaelic as hobby, too. Ray loved the outdoors, was an avid hunter/fisherman, and cherished all things in nature. He was a lifetime member of the NRA and many other groups and organizations too numerous to list. Ray was a foodie”, loved to cook G╟⌠ and was awesome at it, and enjoyed cuisine from around the world.”