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Stephen Michael Raines

November 21, 1962 ~ November 1, 2023 (age 60) 60 Years Old

Stephen Raines Obituary

Master Sergeant Stephen Michael Raines (US Air Force Retired), age 60, peacefully passed away on November 1, 2023. Born on November 21, 1962, in Niagara Falls, New York, he was the son of the late Roy Clyde Raines and Betty Lou Journey Raines. A natural leader, Mr. Raines fulfilled his destiny by enlisting in the US Air Force on September 25, 1981, where his military journey began as an Airborne Radio Craftsman, specializing in the maintenance of B-52D bombers and KC-135 refuelers.

Distinguished by his dedication and aptitude, Stephen underwent training in restructuring specialty codes, radar systems, and inertial navigation systems. His commitment to excellence led him to volunteer as a Flying Specialist, contributing significantly to his career. During his service, he worked on the EC-135 and EC-18 Apollo/Advanced Range Instrumentation Aircraft.

Stephen's unwavering commitment and expertise prompted him to volunteer as an Airborne Radio Operator and Maintainer. In this capacity, he provided crucial support on several space shuttle flights, satellite launches, and the Mars Observer launch, showcasing his versatility and dedication to the mission at hand.

Throughout his illustrious military career, MSGT Raines earned numerous awards and decorations, including the Air Force Achievement Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters, and the Aerial Achievement Medal with two oak leaf clusters.

Stephen is survived by his devoted wife, Debra Joe Raines, for over three decades; his son Joshua Michael Raines (Erica); his daughter Leah Michelle Raines; his brother, Roy Raines (Jody); his sisters Terry Lipiec (Lee), Donna Allen (Thomas), Vickie Detty (James), and Kristie Raines. He is also survived by his beloved grandchildren, Connor, Lindsey, Ellie, and Maps, as well as his adopted daughter Mandy, numerous nieces and nephews, and cherished friends.

Stephen was preceded in death by his parents and sister Barbara and brother Allen.

Stephen, worked as an Operation Support Specialist, playing a critical role in safeguarding the USASOC/SOTF mission. Recognized as a top performer in 2018, his dedication and expertise were invaluable to the success of his team.

A man of diverse interests and a passionate collector of motorcycles, Stephen was an active member of several biker organizations, including Bikers for Christ and Star Touring and Riding. These affiliations reflected his deep-seated love for the open road and the camaraderie shared with fellow riders. Stephen's ardor extended beyond his motorcycles to his cherished pets—Phoebe, Tinsley, Darby, LoKi, Freya and Jasper—whose presence brought immeasurable joy and companionship into his life.

In honor of MSGT Stephen Michael Raines, the family will receive friends on Tuesday, December 5, 2023, from 1:30 PM to 2:30 PM at Harvest Baptist Church, 5504 McPhail St, Hope Mills, NC.

In lieu of flowers, the family request that a donation be made to Duke Health in support of the Lung Transplant Director's Fund. Please mail checks to Duke Health Development ATTN: William Gehling, Box 90581, Durham, NC 27708 or visit https://www.gifts.duke.edu/dukehealth/ to make a secure gift online.

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