Obituary: Ed Raffety
Ed Raffety, 86, longtime Granby mayor and regional recreation advocate, died in Denver on Jan. 1, 2015, due to natural causes.
Edmond “Ed” Raffety was a local grocer, recreation program supporter and a force for conciliatory change during his years of public service in Grand Lake and Granby.
Mr. Raffety was a manager of Miller’s Supermarkets in Denver when he and his wife Pat moved the family to Grand County in 1969 to be closer to the mountains and lake activities they enjoyed. The family lived in a scenic home near the North Fork of the Colorado River.
Ed and his wife Pat opened Mr. Ed’s Market, which catered to the community for the next 20 years. The first Mr. Ed’s Market was located in downtown Granby at the site of the current Budget Tackle. He then moved and built the store to a location further west in a building at what is now Country Ace Hardware. Mr. Ed’s was known as a friendly local market remembered by many for the folksy ad he ran each week in the Sky-Hi News called “Mr. Ed’s Tips.”
While living in the Three Lakes area Raffety acted on his desire to make life better for the community. He got involved with his homeowners association and spearheaded the effort to replace a non-compliant bridge over the upper Colorado. Raffety also took an active role in helping to expand the Grand Lake Golf Course. He did so while serving as a board member on the board of the Grand Lake Metropolitan Recreation District.
Shortly after moving to a home on Garnet Avenue in Granby in 1989, Raffety got involved in Granby town government – an involvement that would last for 20 years. In 1991, Ed was first elected to the town board as a recall election candidate in favor of the town’s then-fledgling recreation department. Some on the board were threatening to close the department by firing the recreation director and cutting funding. Ed was asked to run on a pro-recreation program plank, and he was elected. He then was elected mayor on April 2, 1996, and served for the next four years. Upon the death of Mayor Dick Thompson in 2001, Raffety was appointed as mayor and served again until April of 2002. He served as a town trustee until 2011 and was designated the town’s mayor pro-tem.
He has been a supporter of recreation programs and facilities ever since, initiating a positive change in attitude toward the town’s recreational offerings. For his leadership in promoting recreation facilities in the town, “Raffety Park” was named after him. An indoor soccer dome rests on the property, and work is moving forward for more improvements at the park. Kaibab Park saw improvements during Raffety’s time on the board also.
Raffety was also instrumental in getting a new traffic light in Granby at the initially dangerous City Market intersection, collecting 1,700 signatures in favor of the new traffic light. Raffety was also a leading advocate for forming a Granby Police Department and he played an instrumental role rejuvenating the town after the bulldozer rampage of 2004.
He was born on Aug. 8, 1928, to Oswald and Goldie Raffety. He is survived by his wife Patricia R. Raffety; three children: Rebecca McBride, Connie Foster, Craig Raffety; six grandchildren: Jason Stigers, Justine Naalsund, Ryan McBride, Jeff Loats, Remington Raffety, Crystal Raffety; and eight great-grandchildren: Caleb Stigers, Brayden Stigers, Kingsley Rose McBride, Wyatt Loats, Owen Loats, Adrian Raffety, Lucas Raffety, Nevaeh Raffety.
He has been cremated and a memorial celebration is planned for June 21, 2015, at Raffety Park in Granby; details are forthcoming.
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