Ray Atkinson passed away Wednesday, 30 December, 2020, in Poquoson, VA. He was born at Cheyenne River Indian Reservation, South Dakota on 3 July, 1934. He was the son of C. Andrew Atkinson and Elsie LeBeau Atkinson.
He met and married his first wife Eveline Hafenmair in Augsburg Germany in 1958. She passed away in 1977. Ray and Eveline had a daughter, Celeste, in 1959
Ray began a military career in 1950 and retired in 1980. He spent time in several countries to include Panama, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Germany, Azores and Lebanon. Ray's decorations and awards included the Combat Infantry Badge, Master Parachutist Badge and several ribbons and personal awards for meritorious service and achievements. Ray served in numerous Airborne units to include Special Forces Units. He finished his career in the Transportation Units. He was especially proud of his selection and service at the Military Academy, West Point, NY. It was at this time that he was selected to attend the first Senior Warrant Officer Class at Ft. Rucker, AL.
As a member of Trinity United Methodist Church, he served as past president of the Wesley Fellowship Class. He was also a past president of the Poquoson Lions Club.
Ray and his beloved wife Phyllis married in 1978. They have between them three children; daughter, Celeste Woodson, who preceded him in death this year; and sons, Eugene “Chris” Christman (Becky) and J. Scott Christman (Beatriz). They also have four grandchildren, Zach Christman (Lindsay), Seth Christman (Jordan), Jake Christman (Elizabeth) and Aura Christman; and three great grandchildren, Eli Christman, Bayes Christman, and Harper Christman. Phyllis predeceased him on March 11, 2016.
Due to COVID restrictions Ray's services will take place privately at Parklawn Memorial Park in Hampton.
Arrangements and heartfelt guidance by Claytor Rollins Funeral Home.
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