Raymond Andrew Casias (Ray Ray, Daddy Ray Ray, Tata Ray Ray) went home to be with Jesus on Monday, August 17, 2020, in his hometown of Espanola, surrounded by his three daughters and devoted wife of 40 years. Ray was born to Ramon and Marcia Casias on October 6, 1954. He grew up with two older sisters, Wilma and June, who loved their “baby bother” more than life itself. Ray was later blessed with a younger brother Shane, who brought so much joy (and mischief) to his life. Ray lived his entire life in Chamita, and was absolutely in love with the surrounding areas. Ray (along with James Espinoza) even co-authored a song about the beauty and love of his hometown called, “Espanola Bellissimo Valle.” This became the official song of the city of Espanola (it was later translated into spanish by Jose Luis Tapia).
The core behind Ray’s strength and those who continue to carry on his legacy include: father and step-mother, Ramon & Cordelia Casias, sisters and brothers-in-law, Wilma Casias-Schofield & Tracy Schofield, June Casias-Baker & Curtis Baker, Brother, Shane Casias & companion, Peggy Lopez, in-laws, Tom & Jane Teague and sister-in-law (“little sis”) Susan Teague. He shared his life joy of music and storytelling with his cousins, uncles, aunts, nephews and nieces (and their spouses and children), Lester Casias, Jeremy & Melissa Schofield, Dan & Laura Schofield, Kurt Baker & Chelsea Randa, Seth & Brianna Casias, Kelsey, Justin & Chase Morisson, Craig, Lauren & Tuni Carlson, and Seth, Ashley & Alden Carlson and an endless list of relatives and friends that he held dearly.
Ray was no ordinary man. He took on many roles throughout the 65 years that he graced this earth. He was a program director, radio DJ, MC, singer, songwriter, performer, musician, artist, storyteller, missionary, pastor, uncle, cousin, husband, father and friend. Anyone who had the pleasure of meeting him would agree that he had a way of welcoming everyone into his life and making them feel loved, special and full of purpose. He could always see the potential in others and had a way of relating to everyone that came into his life. Ray always welcomed everyone with a smile or a funny story, while constantly showing us his deep and abiding faith in Jesus Christ. He radiated God’s love through his kindness, joy and genuine spirit. Ray worked in the radio biz for 30+ years and was “the voice of the Espanola Valley,” Northern New Mexico and Southern colorado while working at KDCE Radio. He also dedicated several years of his life to “Trio Jalapeno” as a performer with Paul “Pulita” Martinez, Antonia “Tonita” Apodaca, and Bernardo Jaramillo; sharing his talent as a guitarist and singer with all of New Mexico and beyond. Ray also served as a pastor for 12 years at “Church of The Living God” (under the Pentecostal Church of God) in Arroyo Seco, NM. God gifted him with an abundance of talents that he continued to share with the world until his final breath. Whether it was through ministry, his art, storytelling, songwriting or performing, he always connected with those around him and made sure to turn all glory and honor back to God. Throughout his life he constantly took others in and made them feel like family, referring to them as his “adopted primos, siblings and children.”
Some may ask how a man who gave so much of himself to the rest of the world could make time for his own family. This was never a question for anyone who truly knew him and the kind of man that he was. Ray was a devoted and loving husband to Ann (Annie) Casias, and the most amazing and selfless father to Kezziah, Twila and Capriza. Ray was at peace when he surrounded himself with family, which only grew with time, later welcoming son-in-law, Allen Green and Cristian Madrid as his own sons. Sharing his passions with each of them and creating a lasting and unique bond between them. His love and devotion only grew with the birth of his grandsons Casian and Kaiden Green. He then took on a new role as “Tata Ray Ray.” He would have spent every second of every day with those boys if he could, sharing his love of antique cars with them and talking about “the good ole days.”
While we are all grieving the loss of this genuine and beautiful soul, we have peace knowing that he has gone on to his true home, joining his mom, Marcia Romero Casias, his grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins and other family and friends who have gone before him. He always talked about the day he would hear his mama say, “come home, come home, it’s suppertime.” He has now gone home and is surely enjoying heavenly frijoles, homemade tortillas, german chocolate cake and above all marveling in the presence and glory of God.
Due to Covid-19, we will be doing a socially distant celebration of Ray’s life on Friday September 4, 2020 at 11:00 am. He would have wanted the entire valley of Espanola and beyond to attend, so we have made arrangements to live stream his memorial service on Facebook Live. Please click on the link listed below to be taken to the Facebook Event titled, “The Life and Times of Ray Casias” in order to join us online. We will also be doing a live broadcast on KDCE Radio (950 AM) for all of Ray’s listeners and fans. A special thank you to Richard and Esther Garcia, Casey Gallegos and the entire KDCE Radio family. We love you all!
Facebook Live Memorial Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/822042628347562
The family of Raymond A. Casias has entrusted their loved one to DeVargas Funeral Home & Crematory of the Española Valley. 505-747-7477 – www.devargasfuneral.com
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Raymond Andrew Casias, please visit our floral store.