Ray Carroll spent the last 10 years of his professional career as project manager of capital projects at URI. He retired six years ago. It was time, Carroll says.
“I retired to improve my athletic career,” the 72-year-old says.
He’s only half kidding.
Carroll is a world-class senior basketball player, a five-time Senior Olympian, and a veteran of the Huntsman World Senior Games, held in St. George, Utah. His team came in second in the basketball competition.
Next year Carroll will head to California for the 2009 Summer National Senior Games.
In Carroll’s competitions teams consist of three players playing half court. This would be a challenge for men half Carroll’s age. Not so for Carroll. He’s had a lifetime of conditioning.
Carroll began playing basketball at five years of age; his father was the assistant basketball coach at Lockwood High School in Warwick, R.I. Though he did not make the URI basketball team, Carroll played in an intramural league during his years as a civil engineering student.
He plays five days a week now with the Phantom Farm Team. The assistant coach of Warwick’s Pilgrim High School’s basketball team, Carroll also assists the URI basketball team’s Head Coach Jim Baron at the Jim Baron Summer Basketball Camps, held on campus.
“It’s my thing,” he says of basketball. “I enjoy playing it. I enjoy teaching it.”
Last June Carroll attended his 50th class reunion. It was not his year’s only milestone. Carroll’s favorite memory of his years at URI is not one that took place on a court. Rather, it is one of courting. Carroll had invited fellow student Nancy Wood ’59 to see On the Waterfront at Washburn Hall.
“Because of fraternity pledging rules, I couldn’t speak to her, so I gave her notes,” he recalled. “We just had the one non-speaking date.”
The Carrolls celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary this past November. They have four children and frequent conversations.