WWII Vet and Trustee General Raymond E. Mason, Jr., (1920-2010) Left Lasting Impression on New College

(August 14, 2010) — New College of Florida trustee Raymond E. Mason, Jr., a decorated veteran of World War II and philanthropist who devoted his life to providing higher-education opportunities for young people, died on Friday.  He was 90.

Mason was a longtime member of the New College of Florida Board of Trustees and the New College Foundation and endowed numerous scholarships at the College.  For his enduring commitment to the College and his service on the New College of Florida Board of Trustees from 2001-2009, Mason received a special commendation from the College upon his retirement from the Board in 2009.  He continued to serve on the New College Foundation Board at the time of his death.

“Ray Mason was, above all, a great American patriot.  He was also a central and generous figure in New College’s history, including its transition to full independence,” said New College President Mike Michalson. “He was gruff, insightful and kind, and he asked all the right questions. I am personally very grateful for all that he and his wife Margaret have done for New College over the years.”

Mason was a graduate of Ohio State University and served in World War II in the European theater with the Fourth Armored Division of General George S. Patton’s Third Army. For his distinguished service during the war, he was awarded the Silver Star, the Bronze Star and other citations.  Following the war, he founded the Columbus Truck and Equipment Company of Columbus, Ohio, in 1949 and established his fortune.

But Mason’s real passion was his support of young people in their pursuit of higher education.  He was one of New College’s longest and most staunch supporters.  In addition to his support of New College, he also was a longtime supporter of Ohio State University, Berea College, Alice Lloyd College and Franklin University.

Locally, Mason was a significant contributor to Ringling College of Art and Design, Mote Marine Laboratory, the Sarasota Orchestra, Women’s Resource Center and numerous other educational and cultural organizations.

“General Mason was extremely generous,” said former State Senator Bob Johnson, who served with him on the New College Board of Trustees and who is a former director of the Raymond E. Mason Foundation. “His impact on our local community and on colleges and cultural organizations around the country was extremely significant.  Ray was also a close personal friend, and I will miss him.”

Mason is survived by his wife, Margaret, and sons, Raymond E. Mason, III, Michael D. Mason and Bruce R. Mason.

A memorial service for General Raymond E. Mason, Jr., is planned for 2 pm on Thursday, August 19, at Church of the Palms, 3224 Bee Ridge Road, in Sarasota. For more information, please contact the New College Foundation at (941) 487-4800.

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WWII Vet and New College of Florida Trustee General Raymond E. Mason, Jr., Dies (1920-2010)

 

(August 14, 2010) — New College of Florida trustee Raymond E. Mason, Jr., a decorated veteran of World War II and philanthropist who devoted his life to providing higher-education opportunities for young people, died on Friday. He was 90.

 

Mason was a longtime member of the New College of Florida Board of Trustees and the New College Foundation and endowed numerous scholarships at the College. For his enduring commitment to the College and his service on the New College of Florida Board of Trustees from 2001-2009, Mason was recognized with a special citation upon his retirement from the New College Board in 2009. He continued to serve on the New College Foundation Board at the time of his death.

 

Mason, who was a graduate of Ohio State University, served in World War II in the European theater with the Fourth Armored Division of General George S. Patton’s Third Army. For his distinguished service during the war, he was awarded the Silver Star, the Bronze Star and other citations. Following the war, he founded the Columbus Truck and Equipment Company of Columbus, Ohio, in 1949 and established his fortune.

 

But Mason’s real passion was his enduring support of young people in their pursuit of higher education. He was one of New College’s longest and most staunch supporters. In addition to his support of New College, he also was a longtime supporter of Ohio State University, Alice Lloyd College in Kentucky and Franklin University in Ohio. Locally, he also was a significant contributor to Ringling College of Art and Design and Mote Marine Laboratory in Sarasota.

 

“Ray was a special person and played a significant role in the history of New College,” said President Mike Michalson. “The contributions he made to society throughout his life, through his service to our country and the opportunities he provided for young people to benefit through higher education, are ones to which we all should aspire.”

 

Mason is survived by his wife, Margaret, and sons, Raymond E. Mason, III, Michael D. Mason and Bruce R. Mason.

 

Funeral plans are pending. New College will notify members of the campus and local communities via its website as details become available.

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