Ray M. Harlin Jr., 72, died at home surrounded by family on October 28, 2022. Ray faced cancer with optimism and perseverance with Carolyn, his beloved wife of nearly 50 years, by his side . Ray was born on March 19, 1950 in Martinsville, Virginia. After graduating from Brandywine High School in Wilmington, Delaware, Ray attended the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, where he studied accounting and graduated with honors in 1972. After college, Ray and Carolyn, newly married , moved to Chattanooga where Ray began a 25-year career. career with Arthur Andersen, eventually becoming managing partner of the Chattanooga office. Ray joined US Xpress in 1998 as Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President. He was president and chief financial officer when he retired in 2015. Ray’s retirement was short-lived, which came as no surprise to those who knew him well. Most recently, Ray was a financial consultant for Santek in Cleveland, Tennessee. He has served on the boards of Smith Transport in Roaring Spring, Pennsylvania, and US Lime & Minerals, Inc., a NASDAQ-listed public company headquartered in Dallas, Texas. Loved and respected, generous personally and professionally, Ray was always ready to help people in his area of expertise until the very end. Ray was an avid golfer and a member of The Honors Course and Chattanooga Golf and Country Club. Ray had a warm smile, an infectious laugh and a twinkle in his eye. He loved golf, Jack Daniels, Fridays, walks down the aisles and balancing objects on his head to make his granddaughters laugh. Ray was known to repeat a handful of “wise” phrases so often that his daughter and granddaughters could say them with him. Some of his favorites were; “It’s always better in the morning”, “You learn something new every day” and “Macaroni and cheese is my favorite vegetable”. Ray was predeceased by his parents, Ray M. Harlin Sr. and Mary Elizabeth (Betsy) Foster Harlin and his brother, Raymond Joseph Harlin. Ray is survived by his wife, Carolyn Cantera Harlin, his daughter, Lynn Harlin Shelton (Jason), his granddaughters, Carolina Elizabeth Kelley, Merritt Isabella Kelley and Evelyn Grace Shelton, his sister, Lisa Wagoner (Jerry), his brother , Daniel Harlin (Tina), nephew, Christopher Wagoner (Catherine), niece, Amy Dean (Bobby), numerous cousins and other extended family members. Visitation will be held at Hamilton Funeral Home on Thursday, November 3, 2022 from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. A Graveside service will be held at Forest Hills Cemetery in Chattanooga on Friday, November 4, 2022 at 11:00 a.m. Instead of flowers, consider contributing to a cause close to your heart. Or play golf, have a drink with friends, make your grandkids laugh, and above all, live life to the fullest, have fun, and be kind. That would make Ray smile. Arrangements entrusted to Hamilton Funeral Home and Cremation Service 4506 Hixson Pike Hixson, TN 37343. 423-531-3975.
Posted on November 6, 2022