Ray Rose, Sr, 93, of Carver, passed away Wednesday April 15, 2020 at Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital in Plymouth after a brief illness. He was born to Alfred and Mabel (Perry) Rose in Taunton on February 9, 1927. He grew up in Taunton, where he attended the public schools. He was formerly married to Barbara (Roclevitch) Rose.
Over the years, Ray worked many different jobs, from truck driver, mechanic, explosive ordinance assembler, insurance agent, machinist, dental equipment repairman, and audio-visual technician to help support a family with five children. Since the age of 15 he had been a professional musician, one who never was able to break his habit of being a night owl. Growing up in a family with many accomplished musicians, Ray followed in his father’s footsteps by choosing the upright bass as his instrument. From playing at school dances, then local bands like the Taunton City Band, he moved on to big bands as the ballroom era blossomed. The interruption of World War II sent him to Italy for nearly two years, first as an infantryman, then as a member of the 88th Division Band. After the war he enrolled at the New England Conservatory of Music for three years. He then married Barbara and started a family. While working fulltime day jobs, many times a week he’d take a quick nap and would head out for a night gig. Musical friends like John Shea, Dick Johnson, Lou Columbo, Al Smith, Eddie Shear, John Harrison, the Winikers and countless others kept him busy his whole life enabling him to get paid doing what he loved to do, play music.
As well as playing in shows, summer concerts, general business jobs and with ballroom big bands, Ray widened his horizons with his music endeavors, literally, through travel. He moved to Las Vegas for a while, worked the Caribbean cruise circuit and went on the road with the Russ Morgan Band. He’d spend many winters in West Palm Beach, Florida playing society jobs with Bob Kovner, Guy Scafati and others.
Hoping to maintain his classical chops, Ray was a member of several local symphony orchestras: Brockton, Greater Fall River, and most recently the Massasoit Senior Symphony to name some.
By and large, though, for the better part of the past five decades what Ray valued and enjoyed the most was his employment on Cape Cod with the Jarvis Family at the Chart Room in Cataumet. The friendships he made with patrons and employees were the source of countless stories and memories.Some of Ray’s hobbies and interests dealt with boating and the ocean, tinkering in his workshop, steam engines, jogging, bicycling and tennis. He was a lifelong member of the Boston Musicians’ Union Local 9.
Ray is survived by his former wife Barbara, son Raymond Rose Jr and wife Betty of Pembroke, daughter Marcia Owen and husband Gary of Ft Worth, Texas, daughter Claire Rose and sons Stephen Rose and Alfred Rose of Bridgewater, granddaughter Lianna Rose and great-granddaughter Violet Rose of Old Snowmass, CO and granddaughter Natalie Cordeiro and her husband Gregory of Dorchester. He is also survived by his sisters: Jeanette Nascimento of Berkeley, Carol Souza of Berkley, Harriet Simmons of Assonet, Charlene Pires and her husband Ron of Taunton, Dorita Morris and her husband Anthony of Lakeville, as well as countless relatives and friends.
A celebration of life event is planned for the future.