Florence Gardunio Ray

Florence Gardunio Ray

Florence Gardunio Ray, 92, died June 21, 2021.

She was born Maria Florencia Deluvina Eufalia Gardunio June 8, 1929, in her family’s ancestral home of Nambe, New Mexico, to Rubel and Ninfa Gardunio.

Her ancestors had settled in the area in the 1600s.

In 1935, the family moved to Salida due to the Depression.

She went to St. Joseph Catholic School through eighth grade then moved on to Salida High School, where she was active in 4-H, glee club, yearbook, woodshop and choir.

While attending New Mexico School of Commerce in Albuquerque, she met Bill Harder Ray, a World War II U.S. Navy veteran, at a dance.

The couple were married in 1948 in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and made their first home in Salida, where children Maurine and Billie were born.

The family moved to Washington, where their third daughter, Tamara, and son Richard were born.

The family settled in Connell, Washington, in 1959.

Friends and family said she was a good wife and devoted mother who taught her children to pray, to love, to appreciate, to give and to forgive.

They said she was a trustworthy and congenial friend who really valued her friendships.

Mrs. Ray was a devout member of St. Vincent Catholic Church in Connell and volunteered many hours to church activities and community service.

She was a member of St. Vincent Altar Society, Retired Senior Volunteer Program, Meals-on-Wheels, Keenagers, Eastern Washington Walk to Emmaus, Tri-City Quilters, Mid-Columbia Garden Club, American Legion Auxiliary, Friends of the Connell Library, prison ministry for 12 years and Daughters of the American Revolution.

Mrs. Ray helped her husband in his business for 30 years, and she drove a school bus for the North Franklin School District for 28 years.

She enjoyed sewing, knitting, crocheting, doing crossword puzzles, playing cards and hiking in the mountains.

Friends and family said her greatest joy was being with her children, grandchildren and “little GGs.”

Mrs. Ray was preceded in death by her husband; parents; a son-in-law, George Kaluza; and brothers Harold, Kenneth, Oliver and Loren.

Survivors include her children, Maurine Gomes of Hawi, Hawaii, Billie Kaluza of Selah, Washington, Tamara (Daniel) Trumpy of Hawi, Hawaii, and Richard Ray (Jill Hill) of Seattle, Washington; grandchildren, Randall (Crystal) Cruz of Puyallup, Washington, Amy (Scott) Kaluza, of Selah, Tara (Peter) Ely of Kamuela, Hawaii, Melaine (Jeff) McGuire of Yakima, Washington, Dylan Trumpy of Hawi, Keola (Luis) Gomez of Hawi, Thomas Gomes of North Kohala, Hawaii, Andrew Trumpy of Hawi and Alex Kaluza of Yakima; great-grandchildren Tasha, Zoe, Lila, Eve, Arionna, Lui, David, Beau, Axl and Tavin; great-great-grandson, Paxton; sisters, Joan Hannie and Claudine Medrano; and brothers Leo Gardunio and Michael Gardunio.

Rosary was said at 7 p.m. July 8, 2021, at St. Vincent Catholic Church in Connell.

Her funeral service was at 10 a.m. July 9, 2021, at the church, followed by interment at Connell Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to St. Vincent Catholic Church Altar Society or to a charity of the donor’s choice.

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