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Raymond David Muzia, 69, favorite economics professor for his straight talk, common sense examples

Raymond David Muzia
Raymond David Muzia

Raymond David Muzia, of Yorktown, died Oct. 7, 2015, after a short illness at Riverside Hospital. He was 69.

He was born Aug. 8, 1946, to Raymond Joseph and Doris Belcher Muzia in Stamford, Connecticut. He was preceded in death by his parents; dear “Nana,” Clara Muzia; grandfather, Joseph Muzia; and mother-in-law, Beverly Brevig.

He is survived by his wife, Leah Brevig Muzia; daughters, Heather and Michelle Muzia; sisters-in-law, Lorraine and Betty Brevig; brother-in-law and sister-in law, Chris Brevig and Rosemary Raistrick Brevig; nieces, Margaret and Laura Brevig; and nephew, Paul Brevig.

After joining the U.S. Army in 1966, Ray was stationed in Alaska where he served as a cook and perfected skills he had previously learned while cooking in a bakery at the very young age of 12 or 13. This talent served him well in his married life as he was responsible for many delicious family meals, especially on major holidays.

Upon his honorable discharge from the Army in 1968, Ray then attended Murray State University in Murray, Kentucky. He received his Bachelor of Science with majors in economics, psychology and political science in 1972 and his master’s degree in economics in 1973. He was elected the president of the student government in 1971.

While a student at Murray State, Ray was chosen by the governor of Kentucky to become a member of the “The Honorable Order of Kentucky Colonels,” a nonprofit service organization. In 1977, Ray became a professor of economics at Thomas Nelson Community College, teaching so many people throughout the years he could not go anywhere in public without meeting a former or current student. Ray had been the interim dean of business, public services, information systems and mathematics division for the past five to six years until earlier this year when he took medical leave.

Ray was a favorite among the students and his classes were memorable for his straight talk and common sense examples. You didn’t forget him if you had him as a professor, with his blue jeans, long hair, boots and booming voice.

Ray’s dedication and love of teaching at Thomas Nelson was second only to his devotion to his two daughters who were his greatest source of enjoyment and accomplishment. Ray also met his wife, Leah, at Thomas Nelson and his daughters also attended classes there. As the beloved father of his two girls, Ray also appreciated his relationship with his daughters’ partners and companions, Kenneth V. Farino Jr. and Thomas Winebarger. Ray knows his daughters will be well taken care by these young men.

A secular memorial gathering for Ray will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 16, 2015, at the Hampton Thomas Nelson Campus in the Espada Room at Moore Hall. A meet-and-greet will begin at 5 p.m. and a brief remembrance of Ray will begin at 5:30 pm. Friends, family, co-workers and former students are welcome to attend. Interment will be private at a later date.

A scholarship fund for students has been set up by the Thomas Nelson Educational Foundation Fund, Inc. in Ray’s memory. His family is very grateful to Thomas Nelson for arranging this; Ray would have been so honored by this gesture. Please, in lieu of flowers, consider making a donation to Ray’s scholarship fund or to your charity of choice .

Also, great thanks go out to all the doctors, nurses and other staff of Riverside Hospital who took great care of Ray. Thank you also to The Newport/ The Huntington, where Ray resided during this last period of his life.

Please leave online condolences for the family at Peninsula Funeral Home.

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