Raymond "Ray" Galvin '53
January 26, 2017 2:25 PM
updated: January 30, 2017 8:09 AM
Published in Houston Chronicle from Jan. 27 to Jan. 28, 2017
Raymond Galvin(1932 - 2017)
Raymond Elmer Galvin
Raymond Elmer Galvin died peacefully after his courageous battle with cancer on
Friday, the 20th of January 2017. He was surrounded by his family speaking their love to him and by the music of Johnny Cash singing, "I am bound for the Promised Land…".
Ray was born on the 1st of February 1932, in Cisco, Texas to Frances Irene and Henry D. Galvin. He was married on the 4th of September 1953, to Dorothy Bates, the love of his life for more than 63 years. Ray graduated from Whiteface High School in Whiteface,
Texas and went on to attend Texas A&M University. Despite receiving an appointment to the United States Military Academy at West Point during his sophomore year at Texas A&M, Ray chose to remain at Texas A&M, beginning a lifetime of loyal partnership. While
at A&M, he was a member of the Corps of Cadets and the Fightin' Texas Aggie Band. He formed what became lifelong friendships with his fellow classmates from the Class of '53. Ray graduated with a B.S. in Petroleum Engineering in May 1953 and was immediately
employed by Gulf Oil Corporation. Later that same year, he began two years of military service as an officer in the U.S. Army stationed at Fort Benning, Georgia.
Ray's career in the oil and gas industry spanned over 55 years, He served in various engineering and management assignments for Gulf in Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas and Louisiana, becoming Vice President for U.S. Production in 1979. He assisted in a significant
capacity during the merger of Gulf with Chevron in 1984, becoming a Senior Vice President of Chevron USA, Inc. In 1992, he became President of the Exploration/Production Unit of Chevron USA, serving until his retirement in 1997. Ray was elected to Chevron
Corporation's Board of Directors in 1995, later serving as Vice President of the Chevron Corporation. Subsequent to his retirement in February 1997, Ray was enlisted to serve on the Board of Directors of Swift Energy in 2003. He served as Vice Chairman of
the Board from 2006-2008.
Ray's life was characterized by a commitment to family, integrity, service, and the pursuit of both genuineness and excellence in leadership. He served as chairman of the Natural Gas Council and the Natural Gas Supply Association; on the executive committees
of the Mid-Continent Oil and Gas Association, the National Ocean Industries Association, and the Greater Houston Partnership. He also served for 10 years on the board of Houston Hospice, including as chairman of the board. He was a member of the Houston Advisory
Council of the Nature Conservancy of Texas. In 1998, he was honored by his selection as Mr. Spindletop.
Ray maintained a close relationship with Texas A&M University that didn't just include a religious following of Texas A&M football. He and his wife, Dorothy, provided a $1 million charitable remainder unitrust to endow the Ray and Dorothy Galvin Undergraduate
Student Fund in Engineering. The fund focuses on scholarships and program support for women and ethnic minority students in engineering. Ray noted, "I'm essentially a first-generation college graduate...and received from A&M...a top-quality education and the
opportunity to develop teamwork and leadership skills. Dorothy and I want to do what we can to provide a similar opportunity for other first-generation college students." He was selected as a Distinguished Alumnus of Texas A&M in May 1998. Ray was also an
emeritus member of the External Advisory Council of Texas A&M's College of Engineering.
When Ray retired, Mayor Bob Lanier named February 26, 1977, R. E. Galvin Day in Houston. His co-workers frequently and consistently spoke of Ray's gift for treating all of his work colleagues with value and esteem, showing interest in their well-being, their
lives and their families, "not because of their positions in the company, but because we were people...No ivory tower for him!"
As much as he loved and excelled in his work, Ray's love and unwavering commitment to caring for his family was his deepest source of joy. He enjoyed extensive travel with Dorothy post-retirement as well as two very special trips with his entire family to London
and to Singapore. The family's trip to Singapore was occasioned by Chevron's naming of a 35,000 ton motor tanker as the RAYMOND E. GALVIN. Ray delighted in his three grandchildren and their talents as students, athletes, and in musical and theatrical performances.
He consistently cared for his 200 rose bushes until his health prevented him from continuing to do so. He enjoyed serving at his church homes, Metairie Baptist Church, where he and Dorothy made lifetime friends, and most recently, at Tallowood Baptist Church.
His smile, his sense of humor, his storytelling, his role-modeling, and his loving leadership with both family and work will be greatly missed.
Ray is survived by his wife, Dorothy Galvin; his daughter, Kathy Galvin; his son, Mark Galvin; his daughter, Missy Freeman and her husband, Derek Freeman; his three grandchildren, Caleb, Carly, and Colton Freeman, his brother, Dan Galvin and his wife, Sharyn
Galvin; and many nieces and nephews.
Visitation with the family will be held at Memorial Oaks Funeral Home, 13001 Katy Freeway in Houston, from three o'clock until five o'clock in the afternoon on Sunday, the 29th of January.
The memorial service is to be conducted at eleven o'clock in the morning on Monday, the 30th of January, in the chapel of Tallowood Baptist Church, 555 Tallowood Road in Houston, where the Reverends Randy Kilpatrick and Bill Thompson will co-officiate. The
graveside service will be held at three-thirty in the afternoon at the Memorial Cemetery Aggie Field of Honor, 3800 Raymond Stotzer Parkway in College Station.
In lieu of flowers, the family respectfully requests memorial contributions, in the name of Raymond Galvin, be directed to Houston Hospice, 1905 Holcombe Blvd., Houston, TX 77030.
Memorial Oaks Funeral Home
13001 Katy Fwy Houston, TX 77079