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 RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.
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