Name: Rayburn Cole "Ray" Waldrop
Birth Date: Oct 12, 1921
Death Date: Mar 03, 2011
Birthplace: Giles County, Tennessee
Resided In: Clinton, Tennessee
Funeral Home: Sharp Funeral Home
Visitation Date: Mar 05, 2011
Visitation Time: 6-8:00 P.M.
Visitation Location: Sharp Funeral Home
Service Date: Mar 05, 2011
Service Time: N/A
Service Location:
Cemetery Date: Mar 06, 2011
Cemetery Time: 2:00 P.M.
Cemetery Location: Woodhaven Memory Gardens
Rayburn Cole "Ray" Waldrop, of Clinton, passed away peacefully at age 89, on Thursday, March 3, 2011, at his home while surrounded by family and friends.

Mr. Waldrop was born in Giles County, TN, October 12, 1921 to the late Claude Alvin Waldrop and Florence Roberta Barlar Waldrop.

He served his country in the U.S. Navy during WW II aboard the USS Salt Lake City as a MoMM2C. Following his military discharge he entered George Peabody College in Nashville and graduated with a degree in Chemistry.

He met his wife, the late Betty Lynn Melton Waldrop, while in college and married her on February 8, 1948. Following the marriage they moved to Oak Ridge, TN where Ray got a job with Fairchild. After a few years with Fairchild he transferred to Union Carbide and began employment at the Y-12 Federal Plant. He retired from Union Carbide/BWXT after 53 years of service as a development engineer in April of 2006 at age 84 and a half. While employed at Y-12 he received several certificates of accomplishments including many invention awards.

Ray was an avid bowler and he bowled on the Y-12 leagues for many years receiving many trophies. Before his illness he bowled in a senior league until October, 2010. He also enjoyed gardening, golfing and spending time with his family.

In addition to his parents he was preceded in death by his wife of 57 years, Betty Lynn Melton Waldrop and by a brother, Claude Alvin Waldrop, Jr.

He is survived by daughters; Martha Lynn Waldrop Babb of Clinton and Frieda Diane Waldrop Dale and husband, Kenneth of Oak Ridge, by grandchildren; Sara Lynn Seeber and husband, Terry of Clinton, Samuel Jeffrey Babb and wife, Samantha of Oak Ridge and Eric Dale of Oak Ridge, by two great-grandchildren, Katie and Cole Babb of Oak Ridge. He is also survived by a sister, Frieda Waldrop Cummings of Pflugerville, TX by several nieces, nephews, great nieces, great nephews, and by a special friend Mark Grim of Norris, TN.

The family will receive friends Saturday, March 5, 2011, between the hours of 6:00 and 8:00 p.m. at Sharp Funeral Home. Burial and graveside services will be held Sunday, March 6, 2011, at 2:00 p.m. at Woodhaven Memory Gardens with full military honors. The family expresses their gratitude to the nurses provided by Professional Care Management, especially Ivana. Sharp Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements. An online guest book is available at

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Florian (zoqBBnffPDFf, ZzgOpIAhsRxb scTAcasgXmq)
From all of us at in memory of a life well lived. Mar 15, 2011
The Barlars (, So California U.S.)
My memories of Ray are all fond ones. I met him when I came to work at Y-12 in 1980. He was an inspiration and mentor to me. I am sorry to miss the time to share with you during the celebration of his life (a life well lived). I was traveling out of the country at the time and unable to attend. Cameron Mar 14, 2011
Cameron W. Coates (Knoxville, TN USA)
Ray was truly loving man who was committed to his wife, his family, his work and his God. He loved his job- what a concept for today! He lived a long full life and I am so proud to have know him. As my husband says "he was one of the good guys!". Mar 09, 2011
Katey Dickinson (Fernandina Beach, Fl )
Our deepest sympathy to all the family. We will always remember the years that we were employed by Ray & Betty... Their kindness, their generosity, their laughter, so many fond memories. Mar 08, 2011
Bill & Audra Denton (Oak Ridge, Tn USA)
Marty and Freida, I was saddened to learn of your loss. Your father was a fine man, a product of the greatest generation, and his passing marks the end of an era. I have fond memories of him when we were kids, and I will miss seeing him working in his rose garden, as I miss seeing your Mom walking along Cumberland View as I pass by. My prayers and thoughts are with you. Bonnie Albright Shoemaker Mar 08, 2011
Bonnie Shoemaker (Clinton, Tennessee USA)
I stand on the shoulders of Ray and all the other great workers at Y12. Work for Ray was "fun" and the fun lasted for 53 years. I am privileged to have been part of the fun and the work that makes Oak Ridge, TN and America the landscape for the freedom Americans enjoys. Ray and Betty embraced me as part of their family. God allowed Betty and Ray to stop by on ther way home and spend time with me. I am eternally grateful. The rose garden in heaven is in full bloom... Mar 07, 2011
Jacqueline Bridgeman (Knoxville, TN USA)
Ray was an inspiration to many through his professional life, his many achievements and his long work history. He also was a loyal church member at First Christian Church, and we miss him and his family. He was what my kids would call a "neat guy." Mar 07, 2011
Ken and Ann Hearn (Oak Ridge, TN USA)
My wife and I were saddened to learn of Ray's passing. Ray was a personal and professional inspiration to me as well as many others at Y-12 NSC. I know that the many friends around him will miss him greatly, but they will have wonderful memories to console them. I for one will always remember his advice to "have fun" as an important part of your life. Our prayers go out to his family. Mar 07, 2011
Jon & Marie Bullock (Oak Ridge, Tennessee USA)
Ray has been my "Granddaddy" for the past 21 years and I love him dearly. My life has been brighter for knowing such a wonderful man and he will be greatly missed. Mar 06, 2011
Samantha Babb (Oak Ridge, TN USA)
The family is in our prayers. May the Good Lord be with you all at this time. Mar 06, 2011
Gail Shellnut & Larry Robinson (Oak Ridge, TN USA)
It's an honor to be related to such a great person. He would do anything for anybody no matter what time of day or where. I remember him teaching me to kick a football and falling asleep in his lap when it was late at night. I'm proud to say I share a part of his name. He's now home with his soul mate, and may they both rest in peace. Mar 06, 2011
Cole Babb (Oak Ridge, Tennessee USA)
Sara,Rusty and I are so sorry to hear of the passing of your grandfather. If you need us for anything please call.We love you guys! Our prayers are with you. Mar 06, 2011
Rusty and Shelby Kelley (Clinton, Tenn. us)
My adopted Grandfather and hero! Mar 05, 2011
Chris Roach (Powell, Tn. US)
May he rest in peace Mar 05, 2011
Sandra Eskew, U.S.S. SLC CA25 Assoc. (Grove, OK. USA)
My deepest sympathy to your family. I enjoyed meeting and spending time with your Dad. He was a such a sweetheart. Mar 05, 2011
Janelle Alexieff (Brentwood, California USA)
I am proud to say I knew this man. He was a sweet man, quick with a laugh and a smile. He is truly loved by everyone, and will definetely be missed. R.I.P. Mr. Waldrop, the angels are holding your hand now. Mar 05, 2011
Wendy Butler (Powell, TN USA)
I met Ray,me a Yankee fresh out of college and he accepted me as if I were a next-door neighbor. He taught me how to do my job and he was very patient with me. Several years ago I saw an article in the News-Sentinel that indicated he was still working at the age of 84. Cleo and I are so sorry that we have lost him. God Bless you all. Mar 05, 2011
Cleo and Bob Joseph (Knoxville, TN USA)
Iíve been fortunate to know Mr. Waldrop and his family for many years. Throughout this time, Iíve not met a more intelligent and honorable man. His passing will surely leave tremendous emptiness for all who knew and loved him, but we must remember heís in a better place. My sympathy goes to the family. Mar 05, 2011
Thaddeus Fortenberry (Kirkland, WA US)
Being named in Ray's obituary as his "special friend" is one of the greatest, if not the greatest, compliment I ever received.It is true, and will remain so for the rest of my life. Eternal rest to him and his wonderful wife Betty. Mar 05, 2011
Mark Grim (Norris, Tennessee USA)
God has got another angel.He was a great man and loved his family. So sorry for your familys lose. Thank him for his service to our county. May he rest in peace.But will never be forgotton. Mar 05, 2011
Barbara @ Leon Jaquet (Clinton, TN US)
I will always remember "Betty and Ray" as two of the most caring people I have ever known. My deepest condolences to Martha Lynn and Freida and the entire family of Ray Waldrop during this time of mourning. Mar 05, 2011
Margaret Grim McMahan (North Wilkesboro, NC USA)
Jeff, Samantha, Katie and Cole, So sorry to hear of your grandfather's passing. Please know you are in our thoughts, hearts and prayers at this time. Much love and many hugs Mar 05, 2011
Shelley Russell Wright (Clinton, tn )
God bless you Ray. You are a good man. Ray once told me it is sometimes hard to be a man, he was grieving the death of his wifes mother. Ray is what a man should be. I'll never forget him. May his memory comfort his family. Mar 05, 2011
Sam Babb (Knoxville, Tn )
Rayburn Cole Waldrop was an amazing man. Im honored to know him the short time that i did. We love you and you're always with us. Rest in peace ♥ Mar 05, 2011
Rebecca Rolen (Oak Ridge, TN US)
To lose this Man, Another Heroic American, and a Gentleman, and a Man who Loved his Family so much, gives pause. He will forever be Remembered. Mar 04, 2011
P G Collins (Clinton, TN U.S.A.)
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