Longtime Phippsburg resident Ray Iacovetto passed away May 14, 2006, at Mesa Manor in Grand Junction after a courageous eight-year battle with an illness. He was 89.
Ray was born Dec. 11, 1916, to Sam and Angelina (Lombardi) Iacovetto in Phippsburg. He was the third living child of an Italian immigrant family of 10.
He attended schools in Phippsburg and Oak Creek and was in the first graduating class from Yampa Union High School.
As a lifetime resident of Routt County, he grew up working in the family general merchandise store.
He left the area to attend Barnes Business School in Denver and then served in the U.S. Army during World War II.
On Nov. 14, 1946, he married Francis "Louise" Morey. Two children were born to this union, Gladys and Elvis.
In July 1949, Ray was appointed postmaster of the Phippsburg Post Office. He retired in July 1981.
During that time, Ray and Louise opened their own business in 1969, moving the post office into their building in early 1970. It remains at that location today.
Ray enjoyed the outdoors. Along with his avid fly fishing and hunting, he took on another hobby in the early 1960s -- ranching. He began ranching as a way to relax and do things with the family. It soon became his passion. He started his first herd of cow-calf pairs in 1979. Those cattle were the beginning of what soon became known as the most spoiled and pampered cattle in the valley. Along with the cattle, he started the yearly ritual of haying and erected one of the first hay sheds in the valley.
Ray also found time for community contributions. He was a charter member of the Yampa American Legion Bird Howe Post No. 189. For many years, Ray served on the Routt County Board of Adjustment. He also was treasurer of the Phippsburg Water and Sanitation District from 1975 to 2004. He was the director on the Phippsburg Community Club Board until his illness limited his activities.
Ray always was the steady in the storm and the anchor of his family. His quiet wisdom and guidance will be missed.
He is preceded in death by his parents and four brothers, Flory, Harold, Sam and Claude.
He is survived by his wife, Louise; daughter Gladys Rae and her husband Mike Kelher; son Elvis Ray and his wife Julie Iacovetto; four grandchildren, Marguerite, Gina, Andy and Tony; oldest brother Jim and his wife Pauline Iacovetto of Eckert; brothers Angelo and his wife Helen Iacovetto of Steamboat Springs, Clyde and his wife Alice Iacovetto of Phippsburg and Victor and his wife Ingrid Iacovetto of Novato, Calif.; sister Viola Dunn of Arvada; and many nieces, nephews and friends.
Funeral services were held at 11 a.m. May 17, 2006, in Phippsburg. Burial followed at the Yampa Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Oak Creek-Phippsburg Historical Society or the Yampa American Legion Bird Howe Post No. 189.