He was born March 13, 1928 in Cherokee County, Alabama. He graduated from Booker T. Washington High School in Atlanta, Georgia and valiantly served his country in the United States Army during World War II.
Upon his return home from military service he moved to Ohio and married Ruth Thompson. Rayfield also became a member of Porter’s Memorial CME Church, where he faithfully served as a member, chairman of the Trustee Board, and Deacon for 60+ years. In addition, he is a Free and Accepted Mason of The Progressive Masonic Temple, home of Progress Lodge No. 85 F. and A.M. Sandusky, Ohio.
He was a highly regarded businessman and the owner/operator of Ray Harkness Hauling. He also worked at Clevite Elastomers as a Pressman, served as Shop Steward, and served on the Bargaining Committee for over thirty years until he retired in 1990.
Rayfield found time for his other passions. He umpired and coached Little League Baseball. He loved gardening, hunting, fishing and mowing his and his neighbors’ lawns. Rayfield lived a long and prosperous life filled with love, devotion and respect.
He was preceded in death by his devoted wife of 62 years, Ruth Thompson Harkness; his parents, James Honeycutt Harkness Sr. and Bertha Ann Stubbs Harkness; brothers: Lother, Bill, Ruben, David, Roy, Hugh, Roland, John Henry, James (J.H.), Swan (J.T.); and sisters: Jessie and Audie Dell.
Rayfield is survived by his children: Dennis (Antionette) of Columbus OH, Herbert (Jennifer) of Mansfield OH, Shirley (Stan) of Mansfield OH, Tara (Steven) of Norwalk OH and Christopher of Norwalk OH; 7 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren; 2 godchildren: Lisa Caffey and Troy Price; special great niece, Edie Warner; devoted nieces, nephews and a host of loving relatives and friends.
Calling hours will be held Friday, January 11, 2019 at Porter’s Memorial C.M.E. Church, 1722 Third St, Sandusky OH, from 11:00 a.m. until time of service at 12:00 p.m.; Pastor Ian Gibson officiating; Bishop Steve Robinson of City of Deliverance, Eulogist. Burial will be in Woodlawn Cemetery in Norwalk OH.
Professional services entrusted to Brown-Robinson Funeral Home, 2652 Broadway Ave, Lorain OH 44052. Online condolences at www.brownrobinson.com.