Raymond A. Bickel, 83, formerly of Seneca, passed away Monday afternoon, August 9, 2021 at the home of his daughter in Mantua, Ohio.
He was born in Oil City on July 11, 1938 to the late Raymond and Violet (Zuck) Bickel.
Ray was a 1956 graduate of Oil City High School. He excelled in athletics there and was the quarterback for the football team. He also participated in track and field and set a record for throwing the javelin which held for over twenty years.
He served in the U.S. Navy and was aboard the nuclear submarine Triton during the Cold War.
Ray lived much of his adult life in Ohio. He was active with the British-American Club where he cooked fish for their dinners every Friday night.
Mr. Bickel was an active member of Zion Lutheran Church in Oil City. He always enjoyed being part of the annual Thanksgiving Day dinner mission where the church prepared and provided meals to those in need.
He had many talents and hobbies such as photography, woodworking, and gardening. He enjoyed hunting and playing golf and was an avid Cleveland Indians and Browns fan.
Mr. Bickel was self-employed as dispatcher in the trucking and transportation industry.
He was married in Zion Lutheran Church, Oil City, on March 17, 2012 to Lois Follstaedt, and she survives.
Also surviving are three children: Kimberly Schwesinger and her companion Rick Hall of Mantua, Ohio, Keith Bickel and his wife Jenny of Mantua, and Kristi Soencksen and her husband Phil of Grayslake, Illinois; six grandsons: Paul, Graham, and Matthew Schwesinger, and Kurt, Kyle, and Zachary Bickel; and four great-grandchildren: Parker, Jacob, Gavin, and Payton.
He is also survived by his sister, Marian Stanley of Largo, Florida; and numerous nieces and nephews.
In addition to his parents, Ray was preceded in death by his first wife, Mary Alice (Graham) Bickel; and a sister, Linda Bickel.
Visitation will be held Thursday (Aug. 12) from 6 - 8 p.m. in Hile-Best Funeral Home, 2781 Rte. 257 in Seneca, Cranberry Township. A funeral service will be held Friday (Aug. 13) at 11 a.m. in Zion Lutheran Church, 207 State Street in Oil City, with Rev. Sandra Jones and Rev. J. Michael Parsh, church pastors, officiating. The V.E.T.S. Honor Guard will accord military honors following the service.
Private interment will follow in Sunset Hill Memorial Gardens in Cranberry.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Zion Lutheran Church, 207 State St., Oil City, PA 16301 ; or the Hospice of the Western Reserve, 17876 St. Clair Ave., Cleveland OH 44110.
To express online condolences to Ray's family, please visit www.hilebest.com
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