Vandalia Leader

Follow Us On:

James Richard Ray II

Posted on Thursday, June 16, 2022 at 2:07 am


Ssgt. James Richard Ray II, 27, died May 10, 2022. He was born on April 14, 1995, in Springfield, Mo., to James R. Ray and Cheryl Townsend (Ray).
James Graduated from Buffalo High School in 2013 and then started his military career directly afterwards. He served in the U.S. Army up until the day of his passing. In December of 2013, he married his wife, Elizabeth Ray (Carter), and they had three beautiful sons. He loved his family dearly and will be forever missed by all.
James was an adventurist, enjoying many things outdoors. He enjoyed camping, hiking, music, film photography and never passed up the opportunity to go fishing. He planned on starting a small farm after discharging from the military, raising sheep and growing his own crops, while teaching his sons the importance of farming.
James is survived by his mother and stepfather, Cheryl and Mike Townsend; his stepmother, Monique Ray; his wife, Elizabeth Ray; sons James III, Jonathan, and Joshua; his siblings, Mathew and Amanda Townsend, Bryce Townsend, Joanne and Mitch Henry, and Erik Townsend.
His father, James R Ray, died earlier.
Services will be held on Saturday, June 25, 2022, 11 a.m., at Waters Funeral Home in Vandalia, Mo. Graveside services with full military honors will be in Mt. Olivet Cemetery to follow the service.
The friends and family thank you for your condolences during this time. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Army Emergency Relief fund (www, or H.E.R.O.E.S Care (
We, the family, appreciate all the love and support during this difficult time. Thank you.
Online condolences may be made to the family on James’ memorial page at