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Wife of OSU president dies

by: COURTESY OF OSU - Beth P. Ray, 67, wife of Oregon State University President Edward Ray, died Friday, March 21, after a battle with cancer. She was a steadfast supporter of OSU programs and its students.Beth P. Ray, wife of Oregon State University President Edward J. Ray, died Friday evening, March 21, in Corvallis after a battle with cancer. She was 67.

Beth Ray arrived at OSU in 2003 when her husband was named OSU’s 14th president. A lifetime educator, Beth Ray was a business law professor, academic counselor and assistant dean for academic advising.

She was born Aug. 18, 1946, and raised in Prairieton, Ind. She received a bachelor of arts in English and philosophy from Rice University in 1968, and a law degree from Ohio State University School of Law in 1972.

The Rays, who were married for 44 years, have three children: Michael Ray, Katherine Hall and Stephanie Pritchard.

Beth Ray was diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic lung cancer in May 2013 and had been receiving chemotherapy treatments. In January, she and her family joined the campus community in a ceremony renaming the OSU Student Success Center as the Beth Ray Center for Academic Support. The push to rename the center in her honor was largely driven by student enthusiasm.

A celebration of Beth Ray’s life is tentatively scheduled for June 2 on campus. The family requests no flowers, but suggests those wishing to honor Beth consider a gift to the Ed and Beth Ray Choral Leadership Endowment or the Ed and Beth Ray Scholarship Endowment at the OSU Foundation, or a gift to the Good Samaritan Hospital Foundation to support programs treating childhood cancer.