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Raymond Brokamp

Raymond J. Brokamp

August 2, 1928 - April 4, 2020
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Obituary

Raymond Brokamp, 91, of Cincinnati, passed peacefully on April 4, 2020. The entire community is invited to join in a celebration of Ray's life to be held on his birthday, Sunday, Aug. 2, 2020, at Walnut Hills High School, from 2:00 - 5:00 P.M. From humble beginnings growing up in Camp Washington as the son of a streetcar driver, Ray graduated from the University of Cincinnati and served in the U.S. Air Force before returning home to begin his career as an educator. His three decades working in Cincinnati Public Schools culminated in his roles as principal of Walnut Hills High School during a pivotal time in the school's history, and eventually assistant superintendent and interim superintendent. After retiring from Cincinnati Public Schools in 1987, he went on to spend the next two decades working as director of the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber's Leadership Cincinnati program. He left an indelible mark on the community through his service on the boards of countless local nonprofits including the YMCA, Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Hoxworth Blood Center, Inroads, Cincinnatus Association, Bridges for a Just Community, and the Literacy Network of Greater Cincinnati. His tireless civic engagement through these organizations and many others earned him a myriad of accolades and awards, including the Great Living Cincinnatian Award given by Cincinnati Chamber in 2009. Ray's deep and abiding commitment to the community of Cincinnati was surpassed only by his love for and devotion to his family. He was preceded in death by his wife of more than six decades, Pauline, as well as his father Joseph, mother Josephine and brother Joe. He is survived by his five children, Debbie Haffey (Dick), Greg (Nancy), Pam Giuliano (Rick), Jeff (Sherri), and Steve (Andrea), along with 21 grandchildren and 22 great-grandchildren. A military veteran in US Air Force, eternal educator and selfless leader, Ray embodied the lessons he taught his family and students with a combination of gratitude and humility, and saw it as his privilege to have the opportunity to make a difference in the community he loved so well. In Ray's own words, "if you leave your life without any evidence of the fact that you've contributed to someone else, one would have to wonder whether you achieved anything at all." In lieu of flowers, the family invites you to honor Rays memory by donating to: The Brokamp Family Education Fund, c/o Greater Cincinnati Foundation, 720 E. Pete Rose Way, Suite 120, Cincinnati, OH 45202; or at www.gcfdn.org . A Private Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated. T P WHITE & SONS Funeral Home serving the family.
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Service Details

  • Service

    Location
    St. Stephen Church
    Address
    3804 Eastern Ave.
    Cincinnati, OH 45226
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
    Notes
    PRIVATE MASS OF CHRISTIAN BURIAL
  • Interment

    Location
    St. Mary Cemetery (Cincinnati)
    Address
    701 Ross Ave
    CINCINNATI, OH 45217
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Reception

    Location
    Walnut Hills High School
    Address
    3250 Victory Parkway
    CINCINNATI, OH 45207
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
    Notes
    Celebration of Life at Walnut Hills High School on Sun. Aug. 2, 2020 from 2-5 PM on Ray's Birthday.

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Timothy Conver

Posted at 03:31pm
Sincerest condolences to the Brokamp family from the WHHS Convers (Jean, Steve, Tim & Connie Tucker Koch).

At the initial period when I was being hired at WHHS (after my five years at Catherine Booth Hospital), I was called into the office of my new Principal, Ray Brokamp. "Jean", began Ray... Without thinking, I replied, "My liege?" We both had a good laugh, indicative of the good humor he always projected. What a superb man he always was! - Jean Conver (almost 99yrs)
MM

Malcolm Montgomery

Posted at 07:14pm
I was deeply saddened to learn of Ray's passing. As a student and then teacher at Walnut Hills when he was Principal, I had the benefit of his gentle and thoughtful leadership before I had enough experience to appreciate it. Teaching was the hardest job I've ever held, and I didn't last long - just three years - nor make much of a mark. Forty years later, we crossed paths and I was surprised he remembered me so well. As we recollected those times together, I realized he had understood me much better than I had myself, and that he had even guided me (as best one could) through my struggles with the profession.
I will always think of Ray Brokamp as a man who cared for people as individuals, and sought always to help each of us bring out the best in ourselves.
CK

Chris Kirkland

Posted at 09:46am
To Ray's family- Chris & JoAnne Kirkland send our sympathies for the loss of Ray. We know him through his sons Greg and Steve. While we are sad for the loss to the family, as believers we are happy that Ray has lived his life for the purpose God chose for him. We hope the family has many happy memories to help lighten the grief you feel right now.

Our warmest regards,
Chris & JoAnne Kirkland

Heidi Blinka

Posted at 07:40pm
Dear Brokamp family, my heart is sad at your news. I pray for your peace of heart and that you cherish wonderful memories always. Know that there are many of us who were touched by Mr. B through his guidance of our great school and community. He will forever have a place in my memories. Many blessings to you all. Heidi Inge Wiedamann Blinka

Judy McCarty Kuhn

Posted at 06:12pm
I feel honored to have been a member of the Walnut HIlls faculty while Ray was principal. He was an amazing leader and educator. I first met him when he interviewed me for the English AA position. It was 1970 and the afternoon of the Kent State shooting. The incident was announced on the radio as I drove to the school. When I arrived at Walnut, kids were crying and hugging one another as they sat on the back steps. I entered the office and told the secretary (Phil Eichorn) that I would be glad to come another day, that I knew Mr. Brokamp had to be extremely busy. She said to me, "Mr. Brokamp is ready to meet you. He has everything under control." I knew at that moment that I wanted to work with this man.
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