The Knowlton School is saddened to report the passing of W. Raymond “Ray” Mills. Ray joined the City and Regional Planning faculty in 1964 and taught in the program until his retirement in 1987.
Ray Mills passed away on Thursday, July 23, 2020 at the age of 94. Born in Jonesboro, Arkansas, the second of three children to Weaver and Jimmie Mills. A WWII Army veteran, Ray used the GI bill to get degrees from UNC-Chapel Hill, The Ohio State University, and the University of Michigan, eventually earning a PhD is Sociology with a focus on City Planning. While at Ohio State, Ray met his future wife, Lois Ann Botsford. They were married within a year. Ray received his PhD in 1958, and worked for the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning, before joining the Ohio State faculty six years later.
Ray, Lois, and their three girls loved to travel, camp, sightsee, and visit relatives. After concluding his long career at Ohio State, Ray enjoyed retirement, designing and building a house addition, and learning as much as he could with Lois by taking part in many Road Scholar programs. Their love of travel allowed them to maintain a presence in all of their daughters’ lives and witness the birth of their five grandchildren. Ray was concerned about the U.S. trade deficit and developed a presence in the Columbus Dispatch Opinion page as “Reformer Ray.” Ray and Lois moved to Friendship Village of Dublin, Ohio in 2012.
Ray is survived by his wife Lois, daughters Susan Mills Tucker, Melinda (Steve) Rosenberg, and Barbara (Mike) Mills. Survivors also include grandchildren Harper (Britton), Harmony (Brandon), Harrison (Brooke), Amelia, Rachael and great-grandchildren Layne, Livi, and Kai.
Ray was a man of great conviction. Humble and optimistic, opinionated and tenacious. He lived his long life with incredible enthusiasm. He will be missed by his family, friends and former colleagues at Ohio State.