Ray Campbell died April 16
A celebration of life is planned for this weekend for a former editor of the Waynesville Daily Guide, who died earlier this year.
Ray "Carson" Campbell died April 16, 2014, at the age of 78 from cancer.
A celebration of life will be held for Campbell from noon until 6 p.m. Sunday, June 8, at The Barn in Dixon. The afternoon will be a musical tribute to Campbell from the musicains and bands who knew him well.
Campbell was born in 1936 in Oilton, Oklahoma, where his father worked in the oil fields.
In 1955 he joined the Army and and was stationed in Germany. He and his wife Rose Marie Drew had their first child, Rosetta May, while in Germany. After returning to the United States, Campbell was stationed at Fort Hood, Texas, where his son, Donald Wayne, and daughter, RaeLaverne, were born. He chose not to re-enlist and in 1960 he and his family moved back to Oilton where Chrystall Renee was born.
Campbell was a well-known local musician who played with Bobby Preston, Red Wayne, Butch Biggs among others. It is said that he loved country music and loved to make friends with those who shared that same passion.
In 1969, he married Linda Ruth Goodman of Dixon. After working as a car salesman, selling furniture and with a local moving company, he and his wife found jobs at the Waynesville Daily Guide.
Linda worked as the circulation manager until her death on April 15, 2011. Ray began as the sports reporter, wrote a column called "Through My Eyes" and then became the paper's managing editor in 2000. After leaving the paper, Campbell worked for KJPW 1390 AM and wrote for the Pulaski County Democrat among other things. For the past few years, he served on the Pulaski County Sewer Board.
Gary Porter serves as the chairman of the board for the Pulaski County Sewer Board. He had known Campbell for more than 35 years. Despite opposing political views, he said that he and Campbell were the best of friends who frequently had breakfast together.
In fact, it was Porter who invited Campbell to sit on the Pulaski County Sewer Board.
"Ray was an adamant critic of the Pulaski County Sewer Board. However, he came on board with us with an open mind and I think he came to the conclusion that we weren't the devil that he thought us to be," Porter noted with a smile.
Porter, who is also involved in the Salvation Army, added that Campbell had been a Salvation Army bell ringer for decades.
"One year he even raised over $2,000 for us with a fundraiser with one of his bands," Porter recalled.
Over the past 20 years, Campbell had battled cancer. In November 2012, he was diagnosed with lung cancer. He tried chemotherapy but found the side effects to be too harsh. After a 17-month battle, Campbell passed away in April.
He is survived by three children, Donald (Debbie) of Buckhorn, Rae (Jerry) of Dixon and Chrystall (Gary) of Oilton, Oklahoma. He was preceded in death by his parents, his younger brother, DeWayne, his former wife, Rose, and wife, Linda, and his oldest daughter, Rosette.
For more information about the celebration of life, call 615-419-3417.