Raymond Michael Peters 12/29/1937 – 9/27/2018 at 80 years of age.
Ray’s dream was the theatre. In his best moments, he was the happiest when he could engage others in song and dance. He entertained in Nursing Homes and at all family gatherings and social settings; it was one of those performances that his hands were shaking; it was the moment when he was told at age 49 that he suffered from Parkinson’s disease. No matter what, Ray continued with his life until it was time for him to be admitted to a nursing home five years ago.
To look back on his journey, he graduated from St. Michael’s High School, class of ‘55; and went on to St. Francis College for his Bachelor of Arts degree, followed by his Master of Science degree (with honors) from St. John’s University. He found time to take Accounting credits at St. John’s. His major loves in the educational world were Theology, Philosophy, English, Speech and Social Studies. He served as teacher and drama coach in the Public and Private School Systems, worked for several years in NYC Dept. of Finance and Internal Revenue Service.
Ray was honorably discharged from the National Guard where he served for 6 years. Somehow, he managed to find time to attend the American Academy of Dramatic Arts for several courses, and to be cast in “Off Broadway” and “Off-Off Broadway” in 16 plays. In the play “Killing Game” he was described in the Village Voice as “Thoroughly enjoyable in their parts are punkish Ray Peters…”, and in the play “The Brick and the Rose” the Catholic News described him as “attractive as parish priest”. Ray knew he needed to finance himself along the road; at the same time he was determined to use his gifts in bringing people to the moments of joy and laughter.
Ray had a deep spirituality; he loved the Mass and the Eucharist. His was a memory that was incredible; he never forgot a name and he remembered his former students by face and name. It was remarkable to hear him tell you his commitment to the Mets and the Yankee, and to know every player even back to the time when the Mets were known as the Dodgers and he and his brothers attended Ebbets Field every time the team came to Brooklyn. As for the films on TV, Ray could tell you the name of all characters and the plot; for any song, he knew the words and sung them many times when entertaining. He was up to the minute with current events and shared his views quite openly. Truly a man of justice, Ray always reached out to the poor and to the broken among us; and all of this was done without notice. In his lifetime, he truly was a “man for others!”
Finally, Ray, Our Lady interceded with her Son and He came to receive you into His Kingdom on Thursday, September 27, as you breathed your last peacefully at the Mills Pond Nursing Home. With those who love you at your side, we believe the Lord welcomed you. “Well done Ray, thou good and faithful servant; enter into My peace and Joy!” We will miss you Ray; know you are loved by so many…the meeting with Mom, Dad, Bill and John, and all of your relatives and friends must have been a “super” experience with thumbs up, letting us know that all is well in the arms of a good and merciful God!
Raymond Michael Peters entered his Eternal Home on Thursday, September 27th, 2018 after a challenging 30 year journey with Parkinson’s disease. He is now reunited with his loving Irish parents, William and Bridget, and with his two devoted brothers, Bill and John. He is survived not only by his sister, Sr. Ann Julie, SNDdeN., whom he called his “best friend”, but also by his supportive and caring cousins and dear friends in the USA, Canada, Italy, Ireland, England and Australia. Reposing at Donohue Cecere Funeral Home located at 290 Post Ave., Westbury, NY (516) 333-0615 on Wednesday, October 3, 2018 from 2-4 & 7-9 PM. Mass of Christian Burial Thursday, October 4, 2018 10 AM at Our Lady of Hope RC Church, Carle Place, NY. Interment to follow at St. Charles Cemetery, Farmingdale, NY. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to St. Brigid’s Parish Outreach Program to the Poor Among Us at 75 Post Ave., Westbury, NY 11590.