Rhyl RNLI lifeboat crew mourn loss of long-serving former crewman
Ray Coltman (79) passed away on the weekend of 28 January 2017.
Ray had served as station mechanic on the lifeboat at Rhyl since 1977, and was made Lifeboat Operations manager on his retirement off the crew in 2003. On reaching the retirement age (70) for station managers, Ray was given the role of Boathouse manager, which he remained in until his death.
He had suffered from failing health for a few years, and passed away in Walton hospital, Liverpool. Ray was a widower, his wife Rona passing away many years previously. He is survived by his daughter Jane and grandchildren Luke and Tamsin.
Ray's funeral will be held at St. Thomas' church, Rhyl, at 1.30pm on Thursday 16 February, followed by cremation at the New St. Asaph crematorium at 3pm. It is expected that the crew will bear Ray on the inshore lifeboat to the church, as befits a long-standing and well-loved member of the Rhyl Lifeboat family.
Martin Jones, Rhyl's present Coxswain and Mechanic says 'I am deeply saddened by Ray's passing, and am forever indebted to him for teaching me the ropes and guiding me to eventually take over his role as mechanic on the lifeboat'.
The flags at Rhyl RNLI station and the RNLI memorial at the top of High Street have been at half-mast as a sign of respect for Ray.
Key facts about the RNLI
The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is the charity that saves lives at sea. Our volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service in the United Kingdom and Ireland from 238 lifeboat stations, including four along the River Thames and inland lifeboat stations at Loch Ness, Lough Derg, Enniskillen, Carrybridge and Lough Ree. Additionally the RNLI has more than 1,000 lifeguards on over 240 beaches around the UK and operates a specialist flood rescue team, which can respond anywhere across the UK and Ireland when inland flooding puts lives at risk.
The RNLI relies on public donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. As a charity it is separate from, but works alongside, government-controlled and funded coastguard services. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 our lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved at least 140,000 lives. Volunteers make up 95% of the charity, including 4,600 volunteer lifeboat crew members and 3,000 volunteer shore crew. Additionally, tens of thousands of other dedicated volunteers raise funds and awareness, give safety advice, and help in our museums, shops and offices.
Learn more about the RNLI
Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries
Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 or by email.
The RNLI is a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Charity number 20003326 in the Republic of Ireland