Richard Gray

During his 91-year-long life Dick lived and worked on three continents. He was born and raised in Cork, Ireland, and graduated from the National University of Ireland in 1948 as a medical doctor. After internships in England he joined the British Army. While cruising through the Suez Canal he received his commission as medical officer with a Malayan regiment in Kuala Lumpur. A photo of the time shows Dick in khaki shorts and knee socks, a rifle by his side, although scalpel and sutures were his primary tools as he tended the wounded during Malaysia’s bloody pre-independence struggle. After discharge from the army Dick worked in various hospitals in England to broaden his medical experiences.

He met his future wife Claudia in Huddersfield and last June the couple celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary. As a young married couple they lived in Liverpool, with Dick joining a busy general practice. Soon Mark and Heidi were born and completed the happy family. The children were in elementary school when Dick decided to immigrate to Canada. He joined general practices in Prescott and London Ontario, until moving to Vancouver to work for the Workers Compensation Board. When the board established a new position in Nanaimo, Dick was happy to return to island living.

Dick was a modest man who loved and cared for his family. He performed his work duties with diligence, was valued by colleagues and patients for his competence and compassion, traveled the island to review cases, often brought home extra work, but also had time on his waterfront property in Lantzville to prune his roses and enjoy the sunsets.

After retirement the couple moved to Nanaimo, travelled North America in their VW camper and cruised and jetted around the world. Dick was a tireless explorer of different countries and cultures. He was supportive of Claudia’s musical and pottery endeavors, loved her cuisine, and never gave up on his Diesel Mercedes! He enjoyed celebrations with the family, including grand-daughters Danielle and Brittany. Sitting at the head of the table he poured wine for his guests in celebration of a good life!

Funeral Services will be held Thursday January 7, 2016 at Bethlehem Retreat Centre, 2371 Arbot Road, Nanaimo at 12:00 Noon.

In lieu of flowers donations can be made to the Nanaimo Hospital Foundation.


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