He was a pioneer in the development of high school wrestling in the Upper Peninsula, and he was instrumental in starting a wrestling program at NMU in the late 1960s.
Upper Peninsula Sports Hall of Famer Ray Mariucci died over the weekend at the Jacobetti Home for Veterans in Marquette.
Mariucci was a boxer and wrestler at Michigan State, and he led East Lansing High School to a Class B state wrestling title in 1951.
He started the Kingsford wrestling program, and he organized the first U.P.-wide tournament in 1965. The top U.P. wrestling team receives the Ray Mariucci Award.
Mariucci was the first U.P. resident to be inducted into the Michigan Wrestling Association Hall of Fame in 1991. He was inducted into the U.P. Sports Hall of Fame in 2005.
Ray brought his Italian culture to the area by having bocce courts installed in the Iron Mountain area.
Visitation will be held Saturday from 9 to 11:30 a.m. at the Jacobs Funeral Home in Iron Mountain. Prayers will be recited Saturday at 11:30 a.m. at the funeral home.
The mass of Christian burial will be celebrated Saturday at noon at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Iron Mountain. Burial will be in Cemetery Park in Iron Mountain.
He was proceeded in death by his wife, Dee.
They had six children, including U.P. Sports Hall of Famers, Bob and Steve Mariucci.
Ray Mariucci was 90 years old.