Monday, September 8, 2008

Ray Loring, Requiescat in Pace

Ray Loring, adjunct professor of music at Gordon, passed away Saturday, September 6, after suffering a heart attack while hiking in New Hampshire.
Loring taught courses in music composition, music theory and instrumental arrangement at Gordon. An accomplished composer, he scored nearly 100 episodes for the NOVA series “Saving The National Treasures” as well as numerous other PBS commissions, including Frontline, The History Channel and The Discovery Channel. “Ray was an incredibly talented composer and much sought after to compose music for NOVA programs,” said Paula S. Apsell, senior executive producer for NOVA of WBGH Boston. “Everyone at NOVA has always loved working with Ray. He was not only talented and bright, he always knew the right melody to go with our programs,” she said. “We knew he was busy teaching at Gordon College, but we were hoping to work with him again. Many producers here worked with Ray and loved him. He will be sorely missed.”
A classically trained pianist, Loring studied with Fred Noonan, the White House pianist for Presidents Franklin D. Roosevelt and Harry Truman. At age 28 he wrote the score for the film Ruby.
“Gracious, kind-hearted and always ready to do more to serve others, Ray was greatly appreciated by students and colleagues here at Gordon College,” stated Gordon Provost Mark Sargent. “His passing is an occasion for sadness, but we can also celebrate a life of dedication, service and kindness.”
Also a founding member of Emmaus Road Ministries, a charity that takes medical care to persons during times of war and natural disaster, Loring was considered “the Norman Rockwell of music composition—composing miracles in his beloved studio, which was a converted barn loft next to his Georgetown home,” said Dr. Stephen Price, president of Emmaus Road Ministries. “He was able to recognize talent and fan the flames of creativity in his many students. Ray had a deep faith. He was respected and loved by persons of all creeds and races, who readily recognized that in his success he never left God out as he walked passionately, yet humbly with his Creator.”
Born in 1943, Charles Raymond Loring III was a graduate of Perley High School in Georgetown, Yale University, and was a Woodrow Wilson fellow at Brandeis during his graduate years. The Gordon College community, where Loring first began teaching in 2006, will miss him dearly. “Ray was fabulous mentor and teacher, and great man of faith,” said Tom Brooks, chair of the Gordon Department of Music. “We are certainly shocked and saddened at the sudden loss of our friend and colleague.”
One of his colleagues at Gordon, Michael Monroe, recently posted this tribute. You can also read more about Loring in this 2005 Georgetown news article.

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