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Raymond Alan Pedersen

07/11/1953 - 04/28/2024

Raymond Alan Pedersen, 70, passed away on April 28, 2024 with the love of his life, Alice Amator, by his side.  It was his wish to die at home with her near him, and his cats and dogs, who had brought him so much joy.

Ray was born to George and Marian Pedersen on July 11, 1953 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  When still very young he moved to Park Ridge, Illinois.  He attended Washington School, Lincoln Jr High, and Maine South High School.  He was always the class clown and retained that ability to make people smile and laugh.  He loved playing ice hockey in the winter, and he started to learn to play the guitar, which became a life-long passion.  He loved playing his Martin D-18, which he recently purchased, and was very proud of it.

He chose to explore the country that he loved after graduating from high school.  One of his trips was to Arizona, where he fell in love with the beauty of the desert, and he decided that he would make Arizona his home.

He worked at several jobs before landing a position at Swift Transportation, where he rose up the ranks and retired as Western Regional Flatbed Safety Manager.

Along the way he met a woman who swept him off his feet: Alice Amator.  He told his sister that Alice was the love of his life.  They built a beautiful life together and enjoyed spending time on the beach in San Diego and snuggling with their cats and dogs at the home they created in Mesa.

When Ray was diagnosed with aggressive bone marrow cancer, he approached life with deep strength, which did not surprise anyone who knew him. He battled every day with excruciating pain and great courage.

He leaves behind a heart-broken family:  his life partner, Alice Amator, his sister Janice Pedersen Stuerzl,  brother-in-law Roy Stuerzl, and beloved nieces Jennifer Stuerzl and Jill Stuerzl.  He also leaves behind his brother Jim Pedersen.

The family wishes to thank the staff at MD Anderson-Gilbert, especially Dr. Aileen Go who was by his side every day, and Hospice of the Valley which helped him find peace during his last days at home.


Donations to MD Anderson in Gilbert, Arizona in Ray’s name will be most appreciated: https://www.bannerhealth.com/ways-to-give/foundations



Arrangements by Bunker’s University Chapel, www.bunkerfuneral.com. Should this obituary appear anywhere but bunkerfuneral.com, please check our website for accurate details and service information.




  • My lifelong friend, whom I’ve known since he was eight years old. We were bound till his very last day. A loss, but still filled with the light of his fine spirit. Peace, my boy, for all eternity.

  • When you met Ray, you didn’t just have a new friend; you felt bonded with your very best friend. Ever giving, always funny he never felt very far away even though separated by miles and decades. He was, is, always there.
    I was so pleased when he reached out to tell me he had found the love of his life and reminded me almost every time we spoke. I think of him fondly and often. While I considered him my best friend, I am only one of many ‘best’ friends.

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