Raymond M. “Ray” McDermott, formerly of Hornell

DUNDEE / HORNELL-Raymond M. “Ray” McDermott, 82, of Barrington – 2522 Knapp Rd., Dundee, NY — formerly of Hornell, went home to be with the Lord Tuesday morning (May 18, 2021) at Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, following a long illness with his loving wife and family by his side, hearing his grandson, Brendan McDermott softly singing “Amazing Grace.”

Born in Hornell on October 25, 1938, he was the son of Charles & Mary (Jones) McDermott.

Ray grew up in Hornell and attended St. Ann’s School. He later graduated from Hornell High School (class of 1956). He was a veteran of the US Army, serving his country from 1958-1960. For years, Ray was employed as an engineer at the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) as a Design, Survey, Construction Inspector from 1960 until his retirement in 1995. Following his retirement from the NYSDOT, he worked for several construction companies building roads and bridges, retiring in 2012.

Ray spent the winter months in Cape Coral, FL and has resided in Barrington for about 22 ½ years. He was a member of the Barrington Community Church and was also a member of the Hornell Moose Lodge.

An avid golfer, Ray played in several golf leagues throughout the years, but most of all enjoyed golfing with his boys, John & Dave, his grandson, Brendon and his nephew, Tim McDermott. For many years, and well into his 60’s, he played for the Moose Softball Team in the Men’s Softball League. He enjoyed swimming as he had been on the Swim Team at Hornell High and a Life Guard at the YMCA.

Two of Ray’s most notable accomplishments and of which he was most proud were the fact that he actually quit smoking after 62 years of being a smoker and that he quit drinking in 1983 had has been sober for 38 years.

Ray was very proud of his Irish Heritage and was extremely happy that he was able to visit Ireland. He was also very proud of all his grandchildren and their accomplishments. He loved to attend their various academic awards ceremonies throughout their school years. Ray was a very proud Papa at their high school and college graduations. He is lovingly remembered by many at the former St. Ann School as the grandpa of Brianna, Vanessa and Brendan who was so generous in donating to the annual Christmas Bazaars all the stuffed animals that he won playing “The Crane Game”…they referred to him as the “King of the Crane Game”…and also donning his Santa Claus costume to help out at various fundraising events for his granddaughters at both St. Ann School and Canisteo-Greenwood High School. Always a “child at heart” and fun-loving Irishman, Ray thoroughly enjoyed volunteering with his wife, Jamey, at the various children’s games at St. Ann School’s Christmas Bazaars.

He was also very active in the Desperado Debs Baton and Drum Corp., formerly of Hornell. Ray was one of the first guard instructors and hard working parent of all three of his children who were members in the early years of The Debs….dedicating his time and passion for many years to the various parades, competitions and events. He was lovingly referred to as “Gooch” by the Debs family members.

On June 19, 1999, Ray was married to Jamey Lynn Howell and made their home in Barrington and wintering the first ten years in Florida. He really enjoyed country life, hunting, fishing, his love for animals, his many feline companions and the family dog, Trixie. He loved traveling and sharing their Florida home with family.

Ray enjoyed attending his Class of ’56 Reunions and the Howell Reunions and hosting (with Jamey) the McDermott, Travis and Kenyon Reunions for many years as well as playing “Santa” at several Knapp Christmas’.

In addition to his parents, Ray was preceded in death by his daughter, Tracey McDermott; his sister, Marie Olds; 2 brothers, William McDermott and John “Jack” McDermott; best friends, Joseph “Joe” Martin and Randy Andrews.

He is survived by and will forever be missed by his loving wife, Jamey McDermott; 3 sons, Paul Gueth, John (Lena) McDermott and David McDermott of Hornell; his daughter, Beth Ann “Thumper” Jacobs of Hornell; his former wife, Margaret “Peg” McDermott of Hornell; 6 grandchildren, Deborah Ketterer, Alaina McDermott, Kelcie Lewis, “Scooches I & II”, Brianna Jacobs & Vanessa Jacobs and Brendan McDermott; 1 great-grandson, Cullen Lewis; his Barrington family, Warren & Wanda Howell, Amy McAdams, Jeff & Teresa Howell; the Barrington Church Family; longtime Hornell school friend, Peter Galbo; many nieces and nephews.

A graveside service with Military Honors will be held on Wednesday, May 26, at 2:00 PM at the Barrington Church Cemetery and will be followed immediately by a Memorial Service and “Celebration of Life” at the Barrington Community Church.

Funeral arrangements are in care of the Dagon Funeral Home, 38 Church St., Hornell, NY.

Ray’s family request that in lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in his name be made to the Hornell Area Humane Society, 7649 Industrial Park Road, Hornell, NY 14843 or to the Barrington Community Church, 4560 Old Bath Road, Dundee, NY 14837

To leave an online condolence or share a memory, visit www.dagonfuneralhome.com.