Ray Underhill spent the last two years of his life battling a Chordoma brain tumor. Despite the condition’s debilitating effects, Ray maintained the kindness and strength he was known for. He was an example to his family and to his friends of what it means to be a father, a husband, a friend. Throughout his ordeal, Ray never let his spirit succumb to the cruelty of his condition.
After surgery, and several radiation and chemotherapy treatments, Ray passed away on Friday morning, August 1, 2008, at a hospital near his home in Wilmington, North Carolina.
Ray will be remembered by some as the Powell-Peralta Bones Brigade pro of the late 1980s with the smooth style and deep bag of tricks. By others in the skateboard industry as the Gullwing Team Manager or Web Master at Eastern Skateboard Supply. To those of us who knew Ray, he’s remembered as the guy we wish we were. The one we wish everyone else would emulate—his candor, his kindness, his sense of humor an example to us all. If everyone in the world were just a little more like Ray, what an amazing, peaceful place this would be.
His wife Kerry, and their children Keaton and Olivia lost a husband and a father. And skateboarding lost a brother—one who made his mark on his board, but who went on to affect us all in far more profound ways for who he was off his skateboard. Quite simply, he was the best of us, and is tremendously missed.
Beloved husband of Kerry A. Underhill; survived by his son, Keaton Underhill; daughter, Olivia Ray Underhill, all of Wilmington; father, Raymond L. Underhill, Sr., and wife, Peggy; mother, Roberta Elrod; sister, Pamela Gilbert and husband, Mike, all of Nashville, TN; brother, Craig Underhill and wife, Glenna, of White House, TN; mother-in-law, Eleanor Rainford and husband, Peter Lamagna, of Bolivia, NC; father-in-law, Robert Rainford of Long Island, NY; three stepsisters, DeeAnna Tinal, Angela Minton and husband, Paul, and Shannon Eldridge and husband, John, all of Sumner County, TN; brother-in-law Robert Rainford; sisters-in-law, Karen Clemens, and Erin Hock and husband, Jim; and numerous nieces and nephews.
Ray was born October 18, 1962, in Nashville, TN. He relocated to San Diego, California in the mid 1980s to become a professional skateboarder. He married Kerry on September 5, 1992, and became a father when Keaton was born in 1995. They moved to Wilmington, North Carolina in 1998 and worked at Eastern Skateboard Supply. His daughter, Olivia, was born in 2000. He was a volunteer at Ogden Elementary School. He was known worldwide and loved by all. He was a loving husband, father, son, brother, and friend.