Liberal Arts

Penn State alumnus and philanthropist Ray Lafferty dies

Penn State and the College of the Liberal Arts mourn the loss of alumnus and longtime supporter G. Raymond “Ray” Lafferty, formerly of Folsom, Pennsylvania, who died on Thursday, Oct. 4. He was 88 years old.

Lafferty was born on March 24, 1930, to the late George R. Sr. and Florence (nee Gass) Lafferty. He received his bachelor’s degree in journalism from Penn State in 1952 and served in the U.S. Army during the Korean War.

Lafferty returned to southeastern Pennsylvania following his tour of duty and worked for the W.B. Saunders Company, where he retired as the publishing sales manager in 1994. He then worked for a period for the Temple University Bookstore, where he oversaw the bookstore’s arts and sciences department.

Lafferty’s connection to his alma mater was evident through his gifts to establish the Kent and Jean B. Forster Fund for Junior Faculty Development and support of graduate student fellowships in the Penn State College of the Liberal Arts. He also made an estate gift to create the George and Florence Lafferty Endowment in the Department of History.

A graveside service for Lafferty took place at Arlington Cemetery in Drexel Hill, Pennsylvania, on Wednesday, Oct. 10. He is survived by his cousins, neighbors and friends.

Last Updated October 17, 2019