osewalrus (osewalrus) wrote,

In Memoriam: Lt. Colonel Bernard Wray

On this day, I remember the service of my Uncle, Lt. Colonel Bernard Wray, who flew combat missions in the Korean War, attended law school, served as an officer for the Judge Advocates General Corp, was honorably discharged, and devoted his life to numerous causes for veterans. In particular, Lt. Colonel Wray worked to provide social services to homeless veterans in the City of New York, devoting pro bono hours from his legal practice to handle appeals of denial of benefits from the VA, the Social Security Administration, and NYC social services.

During his time in service, Lt. Colonel Wray was an advocate for maintaining soldier pay and training in the wake of the Vietnam War. An article he wrote in the wake of the failed rescue attempt of the Iranian hostages, urging the President to commit to raising NCO pay to enhance retention, is available here: http://www.airpower.au.af.mil/AIRCHRONICLES/aureview/1981/jan-feb/wray.htm

Lt. Colonel Wray died on April 9, 2009, the first day of Passover, in part of grief from the death of his beloved daughter Laura six months previous. He is survived by his wife, Linda, and Laura's son, Henry. He received military honors at his burial.

"It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth."

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