Raymond Gilbert LockardJanuary 1, 1925 ~ May 22, 2017 (age 92)
Raymond Gilbert Lockard passed away at home in Beaverton OR on May 22, 2017. He was born January 1, 1925, in Patricia, Alberta, Canada to Leona Dickey Johnson and Charles Francis Lockard and grew up in the small town of Kaslo, deep in the heart of British Columbia. As a youth, he excelled in sports and, in summers, carried heavy packs of supplies to mountain fire lookouts and fire-fighting crews. Ray served in the Canadian Air Force from 1943-1945, after which he received a Bachelor of Science from the University of British Columbia, a Master of Science from the University of Idaho and PhD from the University of London where he studied horticulture and plant physiology.
In 1951 he married Joyce Powers of Nezperce ID with whom he embarked on a long career of service. Ray and Joyce traveled widely and visited more than 65 countries. The couple had three children: Dianne, who was born in Malaysia, and a son, David, and daughter, Kathleen, who were born in Ghana.
Ray worked for Canada’s Technical Assistance Program, the United Nations Development Program and USAID (Agency for International Development) in five developing countries in the tropics for a total of 20 years, doing agricultural research on plant nutrition and fertilizers. In Malaysia the focus of his research was rice; in Ghana, cacao; in the Philippines, coconuts; in Liberia, multiple tropical crops and in Yemen, subtropical varieties of apples and peaches.
After living in Malaysia, Ghana and the Philippines, in 1964 the family moved to Lexington KY, where Ray was Professor of Horticulture at the University of Kentucky for 14 years. He taught, did research and was Graduate Student Advisor for the Department of Horticulture. During his years working internationally and at the University of Kentucky he published 28 research papers in refereed journals and co-authored a book.
In 1978, while all of their children were in university, Ray and Joyce worked in Liberia and then Yemen, both among the least developed countries in the world. In 1988 Ray retired and Joyce took a position as Virologist at The Salk Vaccine Research Laboratory in Swiftwater, PA.
Their daughter Kathleen succumbed to breast cancer in 1996, at which time Joyce retired and they moved to Beaverton, Oregon. Although retired, Ray continued his international work by doing consulting work in Morocco and Egypt through the International Executive Service Corps.
Ray and Joyce joined Beaverton Rotary Club, in which Ray was a member for 20 years. They were especially active in International Service projects. Ray taught in the new Ubon Ratchathani University in Thailand as a Visiting Professor on a Rotary International fellowship. He and Joyce developed two Beaverton Rotary International Service Projects: the Rotary Books for the World Project and the Uganda Agriculture Project.
Between 2000 and 2016, with the help of hundreds of book donors and packers, Books for the World collected and shipped two million pounds of used school and college textbooks to educational institutions in eleven developing countries including the Philippines, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Uganda, Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Nigeria and Rwanda. Still on-going, the Uganda Agriculture Project helps poor subsistence-level women farmers in northern Uganda.
Ray’s life was extraordinary in several ways: overcoming poverty and his modest beginnings to earn a PhD, contributing professionally as a university professor and through his research in the field of tropical agriculture in five developing nations to help them increase their food production. However, his family remembers him foremost as a kind and gentle husband and father. A good listener. Someone who didn’t complain, who simply got quiet when he was in pain. He loved his mother, his children, his sister Frances (deceased), his brother Stanley (deceased) and five grandchildren, Ian Frank, Daniel Frank, Andrew Frank, Col Lockard and Annaka Lockard. Above all, he loved Joyce, his constant companion for over 65 years.
A Celebration of Life will take place on July 12 at 2 pm in the Unitarian Universalist Church of Washington County at 22785 NW Birch Street in Hillsboro OR. It will be followed by a reception in the Clubhouse of Seminole Estates at 100 SW 195th Ave. in Beaverton.
In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the Uganda Agriculture Project at
Beaverton Rotary Foundation
P.O. Box 385
Beaverton OR 97075