Tag Archives: Ray the Good Humor Man

Friday Flashback #307

The new Burying Hill Beach jetty, and recent stories about the Compo Beach concession stand, have jogged a number of Westporters’ memories.

They remember summers at the small Greens Farms beach, which — unlike its much larger Compo cousin — was served only by an occasional Good Humor man.

But what a great Good Human guy Ray was.

I have forgotten his last name, if I ever knew it. But Ray was the man who kept Burying Hill beachgoers from starving — and whose Saturday morning route brought him to High Point Road, where kids like me bought toasted almonds for immediate joy, and (if we were lucky) our parents stocked up on other treats for the week.

Several years ago Jean Whitehead — a former High Point neighbor — sent this photo from Burying HIll. It shows herself, her sisters, and some random boy, with Ray.

It’s a classic image. All that’s missing is the jingle-jangle of Ray’s Good Humor bell.

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Friday Flashback #43

A few weeks ago in my ode to High Point Road, I tossed in a memory of Ray the Good Humor Man.

Every Saturday, he jingle-jangled his way up the street. Kids dropped their BB guns, hula hoops or the younger sibling they were dangling upside down by the ankles, and raced to his truck.

At some houses, Ray sold 1 or 2 toasted almonds. Others stocked up on ice cream for the week: a dozen or so popsicles, ice cream sandwiches and whatnot crammed into a cardboard box.

Several commenters claimed Ray as their own Good Humor Man too, on other streets in town. One recalled his magic tricks, like pulling a quarter out of someone’s ear.

Ray was also a fixture at Burying Hill beach. With a lot more sand than there is today, that was a great hangout for us Long Lots kids. There was no concession stand, so when we heard Ray cruising in — and we heard him well before we saw him — we knew we would not starve.

Jean Whitehead not only remembered Ray from those Burying Hill days — she had a photo.

Here — looking like it belongs in Life magazine — are Ray, Jean and her sisters (plus some random boy).

I have no idea what year this was taken.

That’s fine. The scene is timeless.