Clarence A. Ray (1944/06/14)
An Air Medal with two oak leaf clusters attested to the mettle of a local Safeway clerk.
Clarence A. Ray was born in McKinney, Texas, in 1922, to C. A. & Nora Ray. In 1925 he, along with brothers Curtis and L. C. and sister Euletta, joined the family in its move to New Mexico. Clarence was raised in New Mexico; however, after graduating from high school, he moved to Watsonville. While living there, he worked as a clerk for Safeway Stores and participated in radio theatricals at radio station KHUB. In 1942 he was married and living in Monterey County.
On October 3, 1942, Clarence Ray was inducted into the US Army at Salinas and assigned to the Air Force. Following his basic training, he was sent to radio training school at Truax Field in Madison, Wisconsin, where he graduated with honors.
After completing training, he was assigned to the 8th Air Force and stationed in England. During his time with the Eighth Air Force, Ray served as a lead radio operator on a Flying Fortress and by June 1944, had flown over sixteen missions.
Tech Sergeant Clarence A. Ray flew his last mission on June 14, 1944. While flying over France in support of the Normandy campaign, the Flying Fortress in which Ray served as a crew member was shot down. The location of the remains of Clarence Ray have not been identified.
(NARA2; WRP September 22, 1944 1:2)