Cover photo for BJ Ray's Obituary
BJ Ray Profile Photo
1950 BJ 2023

BJ Ray

August 20, 1950 — August 7, 2023


Betty Jean Ray, of Safford, entered eternal rest Monday, August 7, 2023, at her residence surrounded by her loving family. BJ was 72.

BJ, as she was affectionately known by all, was born August 20, 1950, in Bisbee, Arizona, to Otis Russell Dale and Anna B. (Pursley) Dale. She was one of six children born to this union. BJ grew up in Bisbee, graduating from Bisbee High in 1968.

After graduating from high school, BJ married John "Raymond" Ray on December 7, 1968, in Bisbee. To this union were born four children: Michelle Lee, Micah Raymond, Montgomery "Monty" Edward and Merci Jean.

In 1988, BJ and Raymond moved to Safford, Arizona. They quickly made Safford their home. BJ received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) from the University of Phoenix. She then went on to become a Home Health and Hospice Nurse, serving countless families in Graham and Greenlee Counties. BJ was so caring, honest and sincere in her service as a nurse. She held numerous hands and cried often with families as their loved ones transitioned from life to death. She was truly an angel to those searching for peace in such a difficult time.

BJ enjoyed yard sales and anything involving her kids and grandkids. She always remembered the joy that came with the birth of her children and grandchildren, her obtaining her BSN and as a Christian, when she accepted Jesus Christ and was saved. BJ had a great personality, was an amazing hospice nurse, had a wonderful sense of humor and was conservative politically.

BJ was often found saying; "If you fall down, you might as well clean while you are down there" and "Yee-Haw." She held a special place in her life for her pets: Queenie, Diamond, White Cat, Cruella Cat and Mister Turtle.

BJ will be remembered by all that knew and loved her. She was loving, selfless and compassionate.

She is survived by: her husband, Raymond Ray; her children, Michelle Zahra (Naser), Monty Ray and Merci Abeyta (Joseph); thirteen grandchildren and thirteen great-grandchildren; her siblings, Barbara Cartun (Dave), Bonnie Conlon, and Beverly Lopez (Rick).

She was preceded in death by: her parents, Otis Russell Dale and Anna B. (Pursley) Dale; her son, Micah Raymond Ray; her siblings, Barry Dale and Marvin Dale.

A Celebration of BJ's Life will be conducted Saturday, August 19, 2023, at 1:00 p.m., at the River Community Church in Safford. Her family invites all who attend this celebration to wear purple as it was BJ's favorite color.

Following the celebration of life service, BJ's family requests your attendance at a luncheon there at the River Church.

In lieu of memorial trees and flowers, BJ's family suggests donations in her honor be sent to the following charities: St. Joseph's Childrens Hospital and Operation Underground Railroad - O.U.R.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of BJ Ray, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Celebration of Life

Saturday, August 19, 2023

Starts at 1:00pm (Mountain (no DST) time)

The River Community Church

1726 S. 1st Ave., Safford, AZ 85546

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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