The Rev. Robert Martin Raymond, age 86, died peacefully at Birch Bay Village in Hulls Cove on Oct. 13, 2020. He was born on May 6, 1934, in Somerville, Mass., to Clifford and Gertrude (Martin) Raymond. The youngest of six children, and the son of the band director for their local Salvation Army corps, Bob joined the family band at age 4 playing the bass drum (carried on his brother’s back), beginning a lifelong enjoyment of music. When he was 6 years old, he learned to play the trumpet, which he continued to enjoy and share with others for the rest of his life. Bob graduated from Somerville High School in 1952, where he enjoyed a stellar basketball career. Following high school, he joined ROTC and began studies at Colby College in Waterville, with a basketball scholarship. He graduated in 1956 with a degree in math, and promptly began his 22-year career in the Air Force, moving to Texas, where he received his flight training.
When Bob was a junior at Colby, he met incoming freshman and the love of his life, Frances Alice Wren. They were married in December 1957 and began their life together at Westover Air Force Base in Massachusetts. In 1963, the Air Force sent him to Stanford, where he received a master’s degree in statistics in 1965, after which he was transferred to the Pentagon. Between two tours at the Pentagon, Bob spent a year in computer operations in Vietnam. In 1973, he was transferred to NORAD in Colorado Springs. During his military career, he worked as both a pilot and a computer specialist, and was awarded the Bronze Star, the Air Force Commendation Medal and the Meritorious Service Medal. He retired as a lieutenant colonel in 1978, turning down a promotion to colonel so that he could begin his studies to become an Episcopal priest; he was ordained in 1982 and accepted a position as associate rector at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Lakewood, Colo.
Interested in moving back to Maine, Bob accepted a call to lead Church of Our Father in Hulls Cove in 1986. He faithfully served as vicar, then rector until his retirement in 1998. Bob and Fran happily remained in Hulls Cove for the rest of their lives. Favorite activities included weekly hikes in Acadia, singing with the Gospel Gents, playing trumpet in the town band, volunteering for Safe Family Exchange, participating in the Rotary Club (where he was named a Paul Harris Fellow), driving for Island Connections and serving on many committees and boards of local organizations. In addition to remaining very involved at Church of Our Father, Bob was committed to bringing the Episcopal congregations of MDI together whenever possible, as well as encouraging ecumenical events throughout the community. He will be missed by his family, including his church family, his many friends and the entire community.
After being married for 55 years, his beloved wife Fran died in 2013. Bob subsequently moved to Birch Bay Retirement Village, where he spent the last five years of his life. He is survived by his two children, daughter Julie Chalk, and husband, David, of Canyon Lake, Texas, and Scott Raymond and wife, Michelle, of Georgetown; four grandchildren, Nathaniel Chalk, of Austin, Texas, Naomi Chalk, of Waltham, Mass., Jordan Raymond of Old Orchard Beach and Dylan Raymond of Seattle, Wash., and many nieces and nephews. All will miss him in their lives.
A celebration of Father Bob’s life will be scheduled at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations in honor of his life may be made to Church of Our Father (P.O. Box 186, Hulls Cove, ME 04644) or Friends of Acadia (friendsofacadia.org). Condolences may be expressed at jordanfernald.com.