Obituaries » RAYMOND D. WHALEN
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Raymond D. Whalen, 91, passed away on Sunday, August 18, 2019 after declining health. He was the husband of the late June O. (Swift) Whalen, who died in 2010.
He was born in Worcester, the son of the late Walter and Mary (Conway) Whalen and graduated from South High School. A standout athlete at South, his senior yearbook listed him as one of South High’s most versatile athletes. He was a 4-year veteran of the basketball team. The Colonels of 1947 established themselves as one of the greatest basketball teams in South’s athletic history. They captured the Inter-High Championship, the Western Massachusetts Championship Title, and continued play in the 22nd annual New England Invitation Tournament at the Boston Garden. In his senior year, Ray had the honor of scrimmaging the basketball team of Holy Cross College and the great Bob Cousy, who was a freshman at the time. He was also a 4-year veteran outfielder and Captain of the baseball team and named to the Telegram All-City Team. He received a baseball scholarship to college, but declined and decided to instead work with his father at the family-owned business, Whalen’s Variety Store on Canterbury Street in Worcester. In addition, he was a regular first-string on the football team.
Ray owned and operated Whalen’s Variety Store on Canterbury Street in Worcester for a total of 10 years after his father’s retirement. Whalen’s Variety Store was a family run business for a total of 59 years. He also owned Bill’s Potato Donuts of Pleasant Street in Worcester before retiring from the Massachusetts Turnpike Authority. Ray was also a member of the Mass National Guard 181st infantry.
Ray was an avid Red Sox fan, loved the beach, trivia, and whiffle ball games. His greatest joy was spending time with his family, especially his grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Ray will be greatly missed.
He leaves his children, James and his wife, Dr. Mary Whalen of Worcester, David and his wife, Cindy of Auburn, Eileen Welton and her husband,Mark of Marlborough, and Thomas and his wife, Maria of Worcester. He also leaves his sister Mary Brigham of Belchertown; nine grandchildren: Heidi Curry, Jessica Biziewski, Daniel Whalen, Sarah McElroy, Kathryn Whalen, Emily Welton Reis, Jacob Welton, Meaghan Whalen, and Jack Whalen; eight great-grandchildren: Hannah and Macy Biziewski, Brooklyn and Logan Reis, Brayden, Peyton, and Jaxson Welton, and Rylee McElroy; he also leaves many nieces and nephews. Three children, Patricia, John and Jodi Whalen, his brother, Jack Whalen, and his sister, Ann Gaine predeceased him.
Relatives and friends are invited to visit with Ray’s family on Thursday, August 22nd from 5-7 p.m. at the Callahan, Fay & Caswell Life Celebration Funeral Home, 61 Myrtle Street, Worcester. A prayer service will be held at the funeral home on Friday, August 23rd at 10 a.m. Burial will follow in Worcester County Memorial Park, Paxton. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, (www.stjude.org), 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105.