October 26, 1963 - April 15, 2017
With heavy hearts the family announces the sudden passing of Ray Nault. The family takes some comfort in knowing that Ray passed away in his sleep, in the comfort of his own home.
Ray leaves to mourn his mother Helen; maternal grandmother Gladys (Buchu); sister Kim (Harry) sister Michele; brother Michael of Calgary; nephews Colin and Devin; niece Simone of Calgary as well as a number of aunts, uncles and cousins. Ray was predeceased by his father George; sister Shauna; grandmother Victoria; grandfather Etienne and grandfather Edward (Gagu).
Ray grew up in Fort Rouge and attended Churchill High School. During the early years Ray spent his summers at Grand Beach along with with his family. Ray loved to spend the entire day at the beach collecting frogs and tadpoles, swimming and racing up and down the sand dunes with his little sister and best buddy Michele.
Ray had many friends while attending High School. He played football and hockey in spite of being a “little guy”. Ray was a "cool" guy and fun to be around. Ray loved the bands, "Kiss" and "Iron Maiden" and would dress up in character for dances and Halloween.
As an adult Ray made his living as a contract painter. He took great pride in his work and it showed. Ray was entrusted with the paint jobs in some high-end homes and always left a good impression. Ray painted with his uncles for a short period-of-time, forming a lifelong connection with his uncle Bond.
Ray spent his adult years moving back and forth between Winnipeg and Calgary to divide his time with family. In Calgary he was big brother to his sister Shauna and brother Michael. He was an excellent uncle to Simone, a role he took great pride in.
In Winnipeg Ray was a caring son to mother Helen, brother to Kim and Michele (Mishka as he would say) and a loving grandson and uncle. Ray never attended a family gathering empty handed, be it a bottle of wine for the host or gifts for the ladies.
Ray was loyal and caring to a fault and often put the needs of others ahead of his own. Ray took in a stray cat whom he named ``Senora Stinky``. Senora Stinky had the best of everything. The finest food, regular Vet checkups and was fully licensed, tattooed and tagged. Ray was living in Winnipeg when his father became ill in Calgary. He did not hesitate to relocate. He and his brother (and friend) Michael were the sole caregivers for two years. They selflessly cared for their dad right up until his passing.
Ray had a special gift when it came to interacting with seniors and children. While in Calgary Ray would go on regular outings with his niece Simone. He would accompany her to gymnastics and soccer and also gave Simone an afternoon of her very own art lessons.
While in Winnipeg Ray would have weekly lunch dates with his mother. Their mother-son time also included shopping trips. Ray was mom's tech-guy for all of her electronics. Ray was intelligent beyond belief. He self taught on a vast variety of subjects and could match computer skills with the best IT guys around.
Ray had a very small network of friends in his adult years. The friends he did have were all people he met during his days at `The Windsor` many years ago. Ray recently lost his good friend Gord to cancer. Ray, and his best buddy Diane, had a special bond that spanned over several decades and lasted right up until Ray's passing. Our hearts go out to Diane and our heartfelt thanks to her for looking out for and "hanging out" with Ray all these years.
Anyone close to Ray knows that he did have some very dark years in his life. These included battling his inner-demons. At times it seemed that the demons would win and we would lose our Ray forever, but Ray always persevered. Through his art and creativity Ray was able to take back control and was able to live a happy life. Ray was the poster child of a true artist. No matter the form of creativity, Ray excelled. Ray was a sketcher, painter, sculptor, wood carver, story writer, musician, film maker and self proclaimed music master-mixer. Over the span of many years Ray attended the "Fine Arts" program at the University of Manitoba. Ray was just a few courses short of completing his degree and had aspirations of finishing it someday. Ray did not need a degree to prove his worth as an accomplished artist and his work is most certainly gallery worthy.
Although there are no words to describe our unimaginable grief at losing Ray long before his time, we will be forever thankful that over the past several years Ray was able to, once again, enjoy life and family.
"Your presence we miss, your memories
we treasure, loving you always,
forgetting you never".
Love you Ray!
Cremation has taken place and a private family interment will take place in the St. Pierre Cemetery on September 8th, 2017. Family members will be notified of the precise timing.
In lieu of flowers, contributions in Raymond’s memory should be made to the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Manitoba or a cat rescue facility of choice.
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