Cover photo for Raymond G. Rao's Obituary
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1932 Raymond 2023

Raymond G. Rao

November 12, 1932 — June 21, 2023

Raymond G. Rao, 90, of Providence, passed away peacefully at home on June 21, 2023.  He was the husband of the late Margaret S. (Marcello) Rao, the love of his life.   Born in Providence, he was the son of the late John C. Rao,Sr. and Assunta (Pelosi) Rao.

Raymond developed several real estate projects in his early years, and later operated “Ray’s Park n’ Lock,”which was located at the present site of the Providence Place Mall.  He was extremely conscientious about the safety of his customers’ vehicles, especially during concerts where he would remain on the premises late into the night, keeping vigil over the parked cars until the event concluded.

Raymond’s true passions lay in his faith, family and fishing, in that particular order.  His love for salt water angling began at an early age, racing home to share the excitement of his first catch, a little shiner.  One of his greatest achievements was landing a 58 lb striped bass from the shore, right in front of the gun mount at Point Judith Lighthouse.  

During the summer months, he enjoyed breakfast with the gang at Snug Harbor.  Afterward, he would venture out in his boat, snag some bunker, locate his secret spots, and cast his line.  As much as he loved the sport, he often said it was nice just to be out on the water and witness a beautiful sunrise.  

After his morning of fishing was completed, he always made time for his family, taking them out on the boat once again or to the “island” for a picnic.  In later years, he especially loved family gatherings at his niece Robin’s house, often reminiscing and laughing with his brothers about childhood shenanigans.  

Always a renaissance man, he possessed the ability to fix anything and found joy in oil painting.  He was a daily communicant of St. Augustine’s Church.  With Jesus Christ and the Blessed Virgin Mary as the center of his life, in addition to the Mass, he would pray multiple devotions each day, including the Divine Mercy Chaplet and several rosaries, often beginning at 3 am.  He always had a set of rosary beads with him on his boat and in his truck to pray with, carrying a few extras to pass along to anyone in need.  

With a deep Catholic faith, his love for God and resultant joy influenced how he treated others, showing kindness and compassion to everyone he met.  You almost never left his company without hearing a famous “Ray Rao Joke.”  He possessed a missionary heart, praying for people both near and far.  He also made it a point to pray for those who prayed for him, especially during his final years and last days.  His family is especially grateful to Father Robert Forcier for bringing Communion to him at home, which meant the world to him.  They are also grateful to Father Peter Lee for giving him final absolution the morning of his passing into eternal life.  The family also expresses deep gratitude towards Elizabeth Bastan, R.N. and Elisabete Sonseca, C.N.A., both of Hospice Care/VNA of Care New England, and to the entire staff of Right at Home, all of whom provided him with the most kindhearted care during his last months. 

Raymond is survived by his son Raymond J. Rao and his daughter Karen Ridlen and her husband Mark. He was the brother of Lee Paolino, Judge Carmine A. Rao, Josephine Murchelano, and the late John C. Rao, Jr.  He also leaves his nieces and nephews and many dear friends from his fishing community.

Visitation will be held Monday, June 26, 2023, from 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. in the Maceroni Funeral Home, 1381 Smith St., North Providence, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at 10 a.m. in St. Augustine Church, 639 Mount Pleasant Avenue, Providence. Burial will be in Gate of Heaven Cemetery, East Providence. In lieu of flowers, donations in Raymond’s memory may be made to VNA of Care New England, 51 Health Lane, Warwick, RI 02886.
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Service Schedule

Past Services


Monday, June 26, 2023

8:30 - 9:30 am (Eastern time)

Maceroni Funeral Home & Cremation Services

1381 Smith St, North Providence, RI 02911

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Monday, June 26, 2023

10:00 - 11:00 am (Eastern time)

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Monday, June 26, 2023

11:15 - 11:30 am (Eastern time)

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