Ray's Story

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FORT GIBSON – Colonel Ray Harry Van Nostrand was born on Sept. 8, 1929, in Seneca Falls, N.Y., to John Ralph and Florence (Boyer) Van Nostrand. He passed from this life on Feb. 24, 2016, in Tahlequah, Okla., at the age of 86. Ray grew up in Ovid, N.Y., in the Finger Lakes area. He graduated high school in 1948. ‘Three years later, in 1951, he married Carol Bowers and together they had four children. He attended Willard State Hospital School of Nursing and graduated in 1952. On March 22, 1974, Ray would remarry to Joyce Jarmin. Ray enlisted in the U.S. Army and served in the infantry in Japan at the end of World War II. The remainder of his Army career was served in the Army Nurse Corps and served in Vietnam from 1970 to 1971. Upon Ray’s release from active duty, he went to the Army Reserves and retired in 1989 as a full colonel. During his military career, he would receive many decorations. Ray was preceded in death by two children, Lorie Anne Van Nostrand and Michael Ray Van Nostrand; brothers, Gerald Van Nostrand and Walter “Red” Van Nostrand; and a sister, Betty Newell. He is survived by his wife, Joyce of the home; two children, Barbara Lynn Arias and husband Thomas of El Paso, Texas, and Mark Allan Van Nostrand of Bowling Green, Ky.; four grandchildren, Mark Van Nostrand, Ashley Van Nostrand, Michael Arias and Ariana, and Michelle Thomas; a great-granddaughter Rose Arias.; and many dear friends. A graveside service will be held at Fort Gibson National Cemetery under the care of Green Country Funeral Home. Green Country Funeral Home, 203 S. Commercial Road, 918-458-5055.
Published on  February 29, 2016
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