Ray Cote, 1929-2009, longtime Vail resident
Vail, CO Colorado
Longtime Vail resident Ray Cote died Aug. 30 at his home in Tucson, Arizona after 10 years of fighting prostate cancer.
Born in Winchester, Mass., in 1929, he led an active, adventurous, fun-loving life and celebrated his 80th birthday on July 27.
Ray graduated from the Boston Latin School in 1947. He went on to Boston University and then to the Air Force where he was a navigator, taught navigation, and flew for the Strategic Air Command. He later returned to Boston University to get his master’s degree in business.
Ray began skiing when he was eight years old and loved it all his life. He was the captain of his college ski team and raced for the Air Force throughout his 20-year career.
He stopped in Vail on his way to Aspen in 1963 and loved the Vail Mountain. He bought land and came to live permanently in Vail in 1971 when he retired from the Air Force. He taught skiing for the Buddy Warner League.
Besides being lured on vacation to Austria, Peru and Tahiti, Ray’s other passion was sailing, and he captained his S-2 “Columbine” in the waters of Florida
He is survived by his wife Susan, of Tucson and Vail; stepson Hugh Schmidt, of Vail; son Ray Cote Jr. and his wife Betty, and grandchildren Christopher, Timothy, Jonathon, and Jessica, of Oxford, Maine; and daughter Suzanne and husband Kenneth Cox and grand-daughter Dr. Rene Rice and her husband, Scott Rice, of Galveston, Texas, and his grandson John Cox and wife Megan and great-grandchildren Titan and Ellie of Rogers, Ark.
A celebration of Ray’s life will be held at the Christiana Lodge on Tuesday, from 3:15 p.m. to 6 p.m. Donations can be made in Ray’s name to the Shaw Cancer Center in Edwards.