Obituary: Raymond J. Dionne – CentralMaine.com
WINSLOW – Raymond J. Dionne of Winslow passed away peacefully at home surrounded by his family on May 6, 2021 at the age of 81. Ray was born on November 23, 1939 to Adele and Augustin Dionne de Waterville.
Ray attended schools in Waterville and played a variety of sports, especially hockey. As a young boy, at his mother’s request, Ray often served as an altar boy at 6 a.m. mass at the Church of the Blessed Sacrament on Silver Street.
After graduating from Waterville High School in 1957, Ray attended Maine Maritime Academy. Graduating from a BS in Maritime Engineering in 1960, he eventually progressed to the rank of Chief Engineer.
The day after graduation Ray traveled to New York and was immediately hired by American Export Isbrandtson Lines and within 24 hours he was at sea aboard the USS Independence and later the ‘USS Exiria.
In 1963, Ray was recruited to attend a nuclear reactor operators course at King’s Point and then trained aboard the NS Savannah, moored in Galveston, Texas. Here he obtained his senior nuclear operator license and quickly sailed aboard the Savannah.
The ship was greeted with fanfare in many ports and visited by royalty and dignitaries, many of whom Ray and his comrades learned about the peaceful use of nuclear power.
American Export Lines contracted with Bath Iron Works to build container ships in 1966 and hired Ray as a resident new construction inspector, overseeing the construction of the Seawitch, Staghound, and lighting.
Ray then moved to Italy with his family to oversee the construction of the Taeping at the Italcantieri shipyard.
Returning to his home in Bath, Ray continued to work on new builds at BIW, working for Farrell Lines container ships and State Lines roll-on-roll-off vessels.
In 1980, Ray joined Philips Petroleum Company in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, where he was superintendent of tanker fleet and oversaw the new construction of tankers and liquefied natural gas ships in China.
In the fall of 1992-1993, Ray transferred to Monaco as Production Manager to oversee the design conversion of an oil tanker to a floating vessel, production and storage. In 1993-1994, the tanker project took Ray to Singapore for the ship’s conversion. Ray was then transferred to Norway where he continued to work with the tanker fleet and associated work on the oil rig until his retirement.
Ray retired from Philips in 1995, but joined the workforce soon after to work for Tycom Reliance as deputy director of new construction on cable laying vessels in Singapore.
Ray’s great love was his family and leaves behind his wife Mary; and six children, Kelly (Bruce) Dionne-Yahr, Karen Dionne (Tim Neville), Kathy Dionne (Brian Beard), Kristin Dionne (Rob Katz), Karolyn (Tom) Dreiling, Michael Dionne (Jennifer Grant); six grandchildren, Tommy, Peter, Addie, Davis, Leah and Sari; his brother Jim (Nancy) Dionne; and several nieces and nephews.
Besides his parents, Ray was predeceased by his sisters Stella Pelletier, Geraldine Quirion, Robbie Dumont and Joan Gurney.
Ray was a calm, kind and gentle man with a beautiful smile, a quick wit and a great sense of humor. He is greatly missed by all who knew and loved him.
Arrangements are under the direction and care of Gallant Funeral Home, 10 Elm Street, Waterville. An online guest book can be signed with condolences and keepsakes can be shared at http://www.gallantfh.com
Instead of flowers,
contributions can be made in his memory for:
Maritime Academy of Maine
1 Pleasant Street
Castine, ME 04420 or:
Hospice Général du Maine
P.O. Box 828
Waterville, ME 04903