Former Minnesota Aeronautics Director, Ray Rought, Passes Away

Raymond J. Rought

Age 72 of Forest Lake. Passed away peacefully on July 6, with family by his side. Raymond was born January 5, 1948 in Fremont, Michigan to Levirn and Jean Rought. Raymond married Carol (DeLong) on September 6, 1969 in Fremont.

Raymond completed his baccalaureate degree in civil engineering at Michigan Technical University in 1970. Following graduation, he served in the US Army in Vietnam, assigned to the Medical Command Headquarters in Long Binh. Upon his return, Raymond joined the Michigan Department of Transportation, Bureau of Aeronautics. He completed his Master of Science in civil engineering at Michigan State University in 1978. In 1986, he became Director of Aeronautics for the Minnesota Department of Transportation, a position he held for 22 years. He retired from MnDOT in 2012.

In 2007, Raymond was awarded the Kenneth Rowe Ambassador of Aviation Award in recognition of his contributions to the betterment of aviation nationally through research, education and legislation. In 2011, he was inducted into the Academy of Civil and Environmental Engineers at Michigan Technological University and in 2012 elected to the Minnesota Aviation Hall of Fame.

Raymond was very active in the aviation community. He was a member of the National Association of State Aviation Officials (NASAO), and served on its board of directors and as chairman. He worked to establish the NASAO Center For Research & Education. He served as president of the Minnesota Aviation History and Education Center and was a long time member of the EAA.

Raymond is preceded in death by his parents and infant sister, Rebecca. He will be deeply missed by his wife of 50 years, Carol; daughters, Marissa (Steven) Sindelir of Sartell, MN, Alecia (Anthony) Gick of Hampton, VA, and Jennifer (Nicholas) Naschansky of Rincon, GA; grandchildren, Noah & Aiden Gick and Nora & Greta Naschansky; brother, Richard (Linda); sisters, Rosemary (Harry) VanderVegte, Carolyn (Jim) Brown.

Visitation 4-8 PM Friday, July 10th at Forest Hills United Methodist Church, 1790 11th St SE, Forest Lake. A celebration of Ray’s life 11 AM Saturday, July 11th with visitation one hour prior at Forest Hills United Methodist Church. All guests will be required to wear a mask and adhere to social distancing.

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