Ray Bruce King was born the second of 5 children to Hal and Ruby (Martin) King on September 15, 1949 in East Chicago, Indiana. He accepted Christ at an early age and attended Friendship Baptist Church in East Chicago, IN. A mischievous but fun-loving child, Ray was also charming and easy to talk to. Ray attended Carrie Gosch Elementary, and Roosevelt High School, graduating in 1967. After high school, he served in the United States Navy for a time before being honorably discharged. He then attended Indiana University Northwest where he received his Associates degree in Laboratory Science. With a strong desire to make a responsible life for himself while helping others, he became a lab technician. In no time, he established himself as a dedicated and conscientious employee at long-held jobs with both Amoco Refinery and St. Catherine Hospital. In 1987, he relocated to Washington, D.C. where he continued his career at George Washington University, Kaiser Permanente Medical Center, The Washington Free Clinic (volunteer work) and the nationally renowned Whitman Walker Clinic which specializes in HIV/AIDS healthcare. He married his high school sweetheart Freda Hackett and from that union, 3 children were born: Oronde’ Nkosi (LaKisha), Changa Bayete’ (Toni), both of Washington, D.C. and Shani Dara (Neddie) of Merrillville, IN. Ray believed in teaching his children to live life fully and make the most of each day. He was a family-oriented man and always appreciated reconnecting with loved ones. He enjoyed physical activities such as bike riding, tennis and also landscaping in addition to being a voracious reader. He was, without a doubt, a dapper fellow who took pride in maintaining a debonair appearance and even developed a fondness for sports cars later in life. To that end, he was known for driving around town on beautiful days in anything shiny and fast. He enjoyed travelling both domestically and internationally and always shared entertaining stories from his journeys.
Ray transitioned after a short illness on Sunday, April 7, 2019 surrounded by loving family. He was preceded in death by his mother and father. He leaves behind to cherish his memories his children; siblings Hal Jr. of Hammond, Sheila (Gregory) of Frankfort, IL, Daniel (Althea) of Indianapolis, IN & Krystal of Washington, D.C.; grandchildren Desmond, Damondre’, Briah, Taylor, Israel, Neddie III, Oriana, Chloe, Kennedie, Aiden and Wyatt; as well as great-grandchildren Deshauwn, Taylor, Azriel, Halo and Arlowe; aunts Evelyn Murad, Virginia Brooks, Addine Taliefero, Rosemarie Pierce; close friends Howard “Maestro” Moore, Bernard O’Neal and Clifford Cook, in addition to a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.