Ray John Hawkins, 89, peacefully went to be with his best friend, Jesus Christ, on Sept. 9, 2013 at home in Duluth.
Ray was born Nov. 15, 1923 in Chicago Heights, Ill., to Herbert and Hattie Hawkins.
Ray's loving wife of 68 years, Priscilla Hawkins, preceded Ray's home going by only 10 months.
Ray served in World War II and when the war ended Ray and Priscilla pastored in Kansas City, Kan., started a Church of the Nazarene in Wichita, Kan., pastored in Denver, Grand Junction and Pueblo (Belmont), Colo., Clovis N.M., Hooker Okla., and after a semi-retirement were chaplains at the Pueblo Villa for 13 years. Pastor Ray traveled to nine countries for children's ministry portraying Biblical characters, performing Gospel magic and playing his trombone. Children loved being in Grandpa Ray's reading circle and for several years the science camp children from Guymon explored his constructed Space Shuttle, underground tunnels, and a full size whale because of his talents and imagination. Ray loved: Jesus Christ, his family and all things to do with God's perfect creation. He will truly be missed.
He is survived by his daughter, Beth (Bill) Wentzlaff of Duluth; son, Paul (Connie) Hawkins of Pueblo, Colo.; daughter, Carol (Preston) Cornelius of Guymon, Okla.; grandchildren, Lynette (Shane) Cherry and Daniel (Emily) Hawkins and great-grandchildren Autumn and Cole Cherry.
The family has set up a memorial fund joined with Priscilla's to help build a chapel on a new mission field.
VISITATION: 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 21, 2013 with the service at 2 p.m. in Belmont Church of the Nazarene, 1702 Bonforte Blvd., Pueblo, Colo.