Frederick J. Raila, a 50-year resident of Westport, died Sept. 19. He was 73.
The world is a little less bright without his presence . He was loved by all who know him personally and professionally.
Fred received a BS degree with a double major in Business Administration and Advertising from The University of Tampa.
After graduation, his business career brought him from his birth state of Massachusetts to Westport and spanned from executive sales positions in NYC to a successful decade plus in the investment field. In retirement, he enjoyed day-trading and was always ready to provide a tip or two.
When not working and if weather allowed, Fred could be found at Compo Beach Boat Basin chatting with friends, tending to his boat in Bristol fashion, reading the NYTimes in harbor or sailing with accomplishment along the local coastline.
Whether on sea, sand or land, be it Compo Beach or Rayfield Road, Fred would have one of his beloved dogs by his side. Being an avid hummingbird lover since his youth, a casual skier and decent golfer, plus sports car enthusiast, these interests rounded-out Fred’s outdoor interests.
Fred lived for his family. His devoted, lovely and loving daughter, Brooke, was the center of his world and they shared a deep bond … she was always there for her dad. His one and only, his perfect and perfectly precious daughter is how Fred would think and speak of Brooke with pride and admiration.
Brooke, along with the arrival of his first grandchild in 2012, prompted Fred to take up root and move cross-country to the Pacific Northwest.
His son-in-law, Mike, who became a trusting and caring friend, reminisced, “I will miss coming home from work, and watching Fred patiently play on the floor with our boys; more often than not, it was watching Lukas and Henri jump and climb all over Fred, until he would surrender and announce, ‘Brooke, over and out until tomorrow! I love you all!’ It was the same parting line every afternoon, and after each Sunday dinner.”
Fred valued all friendships. For certain, his closest and dear golden friend of 60 years, Paul Valkukevich, of Elliot, Maine summed it up best, “Fred was a faithful friend. Friendship was important, and he was always there when needed. A kind, generous man, friend to all who knew him … He was very proud of our Lithuanian heritage and supported several Lithuanian organizations.” Important to note, Paul was always there for Fred, too.
The talk of friendships would not be complete without the name, Karen, Fred’s former wife. They shared a steadfast friendship for 48 years. Through thick and thin, they were always near each other’s side. Karen, the person to be with Fred before his eyes closed one final time …
Survivors include his daughter Brooke Marie Raila (Michael) Finan of Dunthorpe, OR and two young grandsons Lukas Frederick Finan and Henri Michael Finan, and his former wife, Karen Mariel of Portland, OR. He also leaves behind his older brother Anthony (Gail Prescott) Raila of Plymouth, MA, his niece Cheryl Lynn Raila (Chris) Sullivan of Hanover, MA and his nephew Marc Anthony (Erica) Raila of Arlington, MA.
In his closing remarks, Paul fervently declared, “Godspeed Frederick Joseph Raila. ‘Tegul Dievas tava palaimina Frederikas Josephas Raila.’” Amen