OBITUARY

CPO 1 (Ret'd) Raymond Cecil Lawrence MMMCD

21 October, 19306 March, 2021
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LAWRENCE, Raymond C. CPO 1 (Ret’d) MMMCD – 90, of Dartmouth. With heavy hearts, we announce the passing of our Beloved Father, Grandfather, Great Grandfather, and Brother, Raymond C. Lawrence, on March 6, 2021, peacefully at Oakwood Terrace Nursing Home Dartmouth N.S. He was the son of the late Woodford Smith Lawrence and Augusta Emma Lawrence of Fredericton, N.B. As a young man, Raymond joined the Royal Canadian Navy in 1953. He had a distinguished career in the Navy that spanned 32 years. He served on the HMCS Algonquin, HMCS Restigouche, HMCS Cape Scott, HMCS Nipigon, HMCS Columbia, HMCS Annapolis, and HMCS Assinibione. He also worked at Osbourne Head and spent several years training the military participants in the Nova Scotia Tattoo, ending his career at MARCOM Headquarters. In 1974 he was promoted to Chief Petty Officer First Class and in 1976 the first black Coxswain of Canadian Warship when he was posted to the HMCS Annapolis. Raymond traveled to Rideau Hall in Ottawa to receive the Prestigious Membership of the order of Military Merit. He was the first black Canadian to be appointed to the Order of Military Merit. Never one to sit still, after retiring from the Navy, he became a Deputy Sheriff for several years. His nieces and nephews were known to lovingly call him Chief or Father and teased him about being a new Sheriff in town, which always brought out that infectious laugh we all loved to hear. Raymond is survived by the love of his life of 64 years, Evelyn Carvery-Lawrence, daughter; Deborah Lawrence-Hill, grandson; Michael Lawrence (Dawnetta), granddaughter; Amanda Lawrence-Hill, great grandson; Michael Raymond Lawrence ll, also survived by sisters; Grace Skinner, Fredericton, N.B. and Great Fequa Plattsburg, N.Y. and numerous nieces and nephews. Predeceased by sisters; Miriam Payne, Jean Skinner, Fern Skinner also brothers; John Lawrence, Ralph Lawrence, Lloyd Lawrence, Louis Lawrence. Special thanks to the staff at Oakwood Terrance Nursing Home Unit D and Unit B for their gentle care and compassion. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, there will be no visitation. A private funeral will be held (by invitation only) at A.L. Mattatall Funeral Home 217 Portland St, Dartmouth N.S. Sunday, March 14, 2021, at 2 p.m. Pastor Brian O. Johnston officiating. Masks to be worn at all times. Livestreaming will be available by clicking link on the webpage or through: https://funeraweb.tv/diffusions/807ce6ac-4d24-41e7-a4d2-ce0c781a0b63 Donations in Raymond's memory can be made to Alzheimer Society of Nova Scotia or The Africville Scholarship Fund, Africville Museum 5795 Africville Rd, Halifax N.S. B3K 2R9

Services

  • Committal Service

    Sunday, 14 March , 2021

  • Memorial Service

    Sunday, 14 March , 2021

Memories

CPO 1 (Ret'd) Raymond Cecil Lawrence MMMCD

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Luke Pascall

17 April 2021

I passed through 3 Coxswains on board HMCS Annapolis, Chief Lawrence was fair, firm and understanding, I remember one time I was a little angry , something to do with watches changing or something and little sleep, Chief Lawrence picked up on it and said don't get mad or something and the situation moved on, he could very well have told me to get on with duties, RIP.

DARLEEN EMERSON

25 March 2021

I am deeply saddened by the loss of such a wonderful man.
I met Raymond Lawrence many years ago at my first Africville visit with my mom. My sincere condolences to his lovely wife, daughter, friends and family!

Debbie McClare

20 March 2021

Dear Evelyn. You and Raymond had a wonderful love story together. You cherished each other so much. As a teenager, I was in awe that as parents, you were so much in love with each other, long after the honeymoon was over. You and Raymond always welcomed me into you home and made me feel really special. I feel so bad that you are hurting so much, having lost the love of your life. Please know that I am thinking of you.
Much love, Marty & Debbie(Murphy) McClare xo

Sandra Webster

19 March 2021

My condolences on your loss. I worked with Ray at Family Court, Halifax, many years ago. He inspired me to make a career at Sheriff Services. His laugh (as noted) was infectious . I have thought of him many times over the years.
(30 yrs services tks to his advice/talks years ago)

Mark Reynolds

18 March 2021

Dear Evelyn and Family. Please accept our most sincere condolences for the passing of Ray. I fondly remember working for the Chief when I was his Cox'n's Writer on the Annapolis. I never respected anyone in my career as much as I respected Ray. Janice and I enjoyed our couple of visits with you and Ray over the years when we would find our way back to the Maritimes for summer vacations. The world is a poorer place without Ray and it was a privilege to call him a friend. Please know that our prayers are with you and your loved ones during this difficult time. Mark (Debbie) and Janice Reynolds

Debbie McClare

15 March 2021

Dear Debbie,
Please accept our sincerest condolences on the passing of your Dad. I will always remember his warmth and laughter. I remember when he took us over to Dal to see Dartmouth High win their Provincial Championship. Your home was always so special with the added touches your Dad brought home when he was at sea. May all the wonderful memories you have of your Dad help you through this difficult time.
Much love,
Marty & Debbie(Murphy) McClare

Tom Bond

14 March 2021

Condolences to family and friends. Ray and I sailed on Annapolis many years ago, and he made, and kept, an impression on me all those years since. I just enquired about him before his passing.
He was a professional sailor and fine friend. He will be remembered fondly for his deep laugh, and dedication.

Corey Skinner

14 March 2021

Although I will always remember the many Christmas Celebrations over at Uncle Raymond and Aunt Yvette's house, his conversations about our family history is what I will treasure the most. It was through his genealogy work that I learned that our family proudly fought for freedom during the revolutionary war and that our name is recorded in the Book of Negroes. I wish I had been able to sit and learn more from you Uncle Lawrence. You will be very missed.
Corey Skinner and Family.

Mary Crawley & familiy

14 March 2021

Dearest Eve, Deborah and the entire families of cuz Raymond, we are sending along our heartfelt family condolences on the passing of this lovely man. We have so many wonderful, warm and loving memories of Raymond coming out home (East Preston) to visit my grandmother and us. We looked so forward to his and Eve"s visits on a regular basis. When we are children it is people like Raymond who remain in our hearts because of his gentleness , kind, loving personality, and simply for just taking the time to spend t he time with us. May you all be comforted today by God's peace that passes all understanding. We will remember Raymond forever just know how blessed you were to have been blessed by God with such a wonderful man to represent your family. Love and blessings to you all...

Keith Musselman

13 March 2021

Ray Lawrence was my first Cox'n on H.M.C.S. Annapolis. I was a young Ordinary Seaman then and Ray was definitely the "Sherriff", but he always struck me as firm but fair. I remember talking to him on a couple occasions where he mentioned some of the challenges he went through, joining the Navy as a young man in the 1950's. I think I remember he did some boxing in the Navy in his younger days. I believe that was a way for him to solve a few problems and make a statement about his point of view. He was someone early in my career that I definitely respected and admired. My condolences to his family and a "BRAVO ZULU" to all his accomplishments.

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