Raymond L. Best

June 7, 1927August 2, 2013

Raymond Larnce Best, 86, of Shelley, Idaho, passed away on Friday, August 2, 2013, at The Gables of Shelley Assisted Living Center.

Ray was born on June 7, 1927, to Walter Joseph Best and Gertrude Marie Lynch Best in Springfield, Illinois. He graduated from Springfield High School and Springfield Business College.

Ray joined the Army Air Corps on March 1, 1946, and was a Veteran of World War II. While in the service, he was stationed at Lowry Field in Denver, Colorado. He was a camera tech and did his training there, after which he was stationed at Langley Field in Virginia.

While stationed in Colorado, Ray met Sherry Lee Boozer. They were married in 1948 at Holy Rosary Catholic Church in Idaho Falls, Idaho. The couple made their home in Springfield, Illinois, and Burlington, Iowa, where he worked for Nabisco. They later moved to Idaho Falls. Ray had seven children and was very active at Holy Rosary Catholic Church and School. He was on the School Board for Holy Rosary Catholic School, Co-President of the PTA and A Fourth Degree Knight in the Knights of Columbus. Ray also belonged to the Exchange Club of Idaho Falls. He and Sherry divorced in 1971.

Ray worked at J.H. Boozer Oil and Lemmon’s House Moving as a bookkeeper. He owned and operated Ray’s Minit Market and Bergsnieder’s RV in Idaho Falls.

Ray loved Island Park and bought property there in 1974. He built a cabin there and in 1993 he made his dream come true and moved there to live full time. He leased and operated the Cow Bell in Island Park and also worked at the Shotgun Store and Restaurant. In 2003 he moved to Shelley, Idaho. Ray loved to camp and spend time with his family and many friends, and will be greatly missed by all.

Ray is survived by his sister, Dorothy Cour of Springfield, Illinois, and his children, Sandra (Regis) Hahn of Idaho Falls, Robert (Cathie) Best of Pasco, Washington, Thomas (Francine) Best of Caldwell, Joseph (Sandra) Best of Shelley, Teresa (Greg) McDonald of Butte, Montana, Charles (Dale) Best of Boise, and Rebecca (Becky) Best of Shelley; his eighteen grandchildren and twenty-one great grandchildren, with two more on the way. He was preceded in death by his parents, Walter and Gertrude Best of Springfield, Illinois and his brothers, Walter, Bill, Geri and Jimmy Best, and sisters, Mary Vespa, Stella Fee and Catherine Best, a grandson, Bryce Fausett Best, and a great-grandson, Carson Hahn.

The family of Ray Best would like to thank Dr. Bradley Stoddard, The staff at The Gables of Shelley, Aspen Home Health and Hospice, the staff at the Salt Lake City VA, The Pocatello Clinic and the Veteran’s Administration at St. Paul, Minnesota, for their loving care of our father.

A Funeral Mass will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Friday, August 9, 2013 at Holy Rosary Catholic Church, 145 9th Street in Idaho Falls, with Father Raul Covarrubias, celebrant. A Rosary will be held from 6:00 – 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, with a viewing following from 7:00 – 8:00 p.m. both at Buck-Miller-Hann Funeral Home, 825 E. 17th Street in Idaho Falls. Interment will be in the Shelley-Hillcrest Cemetery in Shelley, Idaho.

In lieu of flowers the family suggests donations be made to The Aspen Foundation for Hospice Care, 3470 Washington Parkway, Idaho Falls, Idaho 83404, or the VA – Military Affairs Committee, c/o Mike McClendor, PO Box 3405, Idaho Falls, Idaho 83402-3405.


  • Rosary Thursday, August 8, 2013
  • Viewing Thursday, August 8, 2013
  • Funeral Mass Friday, August 9, 2013
  • Graveside Services Friday, August 9, 2013

Raymond L. Best

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Cindy (Fee) Scott

August 19, 2013

I was so sorry to learn about Uncle Ray's passing. We didn't get to see him, Aunt Sherry, or our 7 cousins very often during our growing up years, but I particularly remember a wonderful visit when we lived in Jacksonville, IL, and how much fun we cousins had running and playing together. I also remember Uncle Ray visiting in my home years later, on the sad occasion of Grandpa Best's death. I was struck by how joyous and full of life Uncle Ray was, and I remember wishing we did not live so far apart. I would have loved for my children to know that wonderful branch of the family. I have so enjoyed reading all the wonderful anecdotes that Sam has shared about Uncle Ray during recent years. What an amazing man he was, making new friends and making people laugh up to the very end. He will be much missed and will live on in the memories of his children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews and friends. Meanwhile, he is no doubt having a wonderful time in heaven celebrating a reunion with his parents, brothers and sisters!

Kim & Len Schoppe

August 10, 2013

We were so saddened to hear of Rays passing. He was a man of great kindness & warmth to all that crossed his past. His cabin is across the street from ours in Island Park, ID. We've known him & some of his kids for the years that he resided at his cabin. He was always lending a helping hand...a good story...jokes...good food and more. A wonderful human being and will be truly missed by us and many. May Gods blessings be with his family during this time of sadness, we will miss him greatly as a good friend & neighbor. With Sympathy

Brian and Sonia Schuetz

August 9, 2013

Ray was so happy and funny. When we saw him at the Gables in Shelley, he was always ready with a joke or story. He was often joking and teasing the lady residents or staff. What a ladies man. I enjoyed visiting with him when I went to see my mom there. He was a Catholic gentleman. We will keep your family and Ray in our prayers.

Steve Cour

August 8, 2013

My thoughts and prayers to all my cousins, their children and grandchildren on the loss of a special guy. Ray and Sherry were my Godparents as well as my Aunt and Uncle and I miss both of them. Please know we are all thinking of you and will keep each of you in our prayers.

Cathie Best

August 7, 2013

Ray had such a joy for living. He always had a smile, a joke to share, great hugs, welcoming and happy to see you, cooking and feeding everyone. When you were with him you knew you were loved! When the family gathers now he will be missed beyond what can even be imagined but the greatest gifts he shared will be with us forever. I see his smile reflected in the faces of his children and grand children, and great grand children, his kindness, love and warm welcomes. I am so sorry he is gone and so grateful to have had him in my life.

August 6, 2013

My condolances to all the children of Ray. I really liked him thruout the years that I got to see and talk with him. Not often but enough times that I really got to know him and like him. May all you kids keep his memories alive and well. Gwen Suttory Best Rosenfeld ex-wife of your Uncle Bill Best