Ray Gene Brooks was born on August 20, 1928 in Phenix City, Alabama to Annie Franklin Brooks and Ruben Weaver Brooks. He passed away peacefully on Tuesday, April 20, 2021 at the age of 92. In his later years he loved to make people guess his age. Since they always guessed younger, he would laugh and say for instance, “Would you believe in 7 years and 4 months, I’ll be 100?!”
Ray Brooks had fun with life and with people.
He is survived by six children: David Brooks and wife, Rose; Ron Brooks and wife, Gaby; Tim Brooks and wife, Kay; Sandy Brooks; Teresa Mena; and Chris Brooks and wife, Jeri. Four grandchildren: Misty Lackey and husband Dustin; Matthew Brooks; Nicole Mena; and Nathan Mena. Two great grandchildren: Trent and Quinn Lackey. He is also survived by his brother Jerry; sister, Joyce; and many nieces and nephews.
He is preceded in death by the love of his life, Quinnie Lindsey Brooks, having married her on December 22, 1948. After her death on May 7, 2017, he rarely missed a day visiting her graveside. He is also preceded in death by his parents and his sister, Georgia.
Ray proudly served his country in the Army Air Corp before it became the U.S. Air Force and then afterwards. He received the Air Force Commendation Medal from the then Secretary of the Air Force Harold Brown giving him credit for achieving required technical operational readiness of the 366th Tactical Fighter Wing. This Wing consisted of three F-4 Phantom aircraft squadrons having the critical objective of timely deployment to Vietnam. This achievement was preceded by being charged with the duty of United States Air Force Technical Advisor to the Arizona Air National Guard’s 162nd Technical Fighter Wing. He provided necessary technical advice for establishing the Aircraft Maintenance Protocol for maintaining operational readiness. This Protocol is still in use today and was responsible for the alert readiness of the two F-16 fighter jets launched on 9/11 having the responsibility to intercept the commercial aircraft flown by terrorists that crashed in Pennsylvania. .
After 20 years of service and retirement from the U.S. Air Force, Ray formed two companies, Convey, Incorporated and WEC Technology, Incorporated. Ray, individually, and together with son, Tim Brooks, holds many patents for inventions they both originated and/or developed with others. One of Ray’s earliest patents was for co-development of the hand-held trigger sprayer commonly used on all household cleaners.
Under his leadership, WEC Technology was a winner of the 1995 Vendor of Choice awarded by Texas Instruments. This award was given to only 0.5% out of the approximately 21,000 vendors TI had in place at that time. WEC was a global manufacturer of IC wafer packaging products supplying semiconductor customers on a worldwide basis.
Ray had an interesting life and was independent up to the end. He was always known to credit God with “being there for me!” He tried to help others less fortunate than himself his entire life. In this he set a fine example for his family to follow. He was so loved and will be missed very much by his family and friends.