SAVANNAH -- A beloved family man with many passions in life, George Raymond (Ray) Mitchell, Jr., of Camilla, GA died peacefully in Savannah, GA on Sunday, February 5, 2012.
Ray was born and raised in Atlanta. He was the son of the late George Raymond Mitchell, Sr. and Sara Mitchell Parsons. After graduating from North Fulton High, Ray attended the University of Georgia where he was an active member and president of Sigma Chi fraternity. Soon after graduating, Ray joined Crawford & Co. as an insurance adjuster in Savannah. In 1962, Ray and his young family moved to Statesboro, GA where he lived for nine years.
In 1970, Ray followed his passion for reading and writing to Emory University where he graduated with an M.A. degree in Library Science. The following year, Ray became the Regional Director of the DeSoto Trail Library System in Camilla, GA, a position he held for over 30 years until his recent retirement. Throughout his life, Ray had many other passions, including scuba diving, acting in community theater, traveling extensively in the U.S. and abroad, and motorcycling (which included rides to the county seats of all 159 Georgia counties). Legally blind late in life as the result of diabetes, Ray became a leading advocate for increased funding of audio books in America's libraries.
Ray is survived by his children (with former wife, Deborah Prather Loper), David R. Mitchell, and wife Kathleen, of Chicago, IL; GeorgeAnn Phillips, and husband David, of Grovetown, GA; Sarah Yates, and husband Brad, of Savannah, GA; and Larisa McMichael, and husband Stan, of Newnan, GA; stepchildren (with the late Jane Smith Mitchell), Joy Davis and Kevin Oliver; grandchildren, Bowen and Hannah Phillips; Ella and Sonny Yates; Dinara McMichael; Colleen and Russ Mitchell; step grandchildren, Rackley and Mason Davis; sister, Susan Mitchell Rogers and brother, Perry Mitchell; aunt, Linda Perry; stepfather, Tom Parsons; loyal friend and caretaker, Joel Jackson; and loving companion, Jan Brackett.
In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate donations to Literacy Volunteers of Atlanta (www.lvama.org).
An outdoor Memorial Service will be held Saturday, February 11, 2012 at 11:00 a.m., in Lafayette Square (E Charlton St. and E Jones St.), immediately followed by a gathering at the home of Sarah and Brad Yates, 302 E Charlton St., Savannah, GA.
Fox and Weeks Funeral Directors