Sunday, June 22, 2008

At Peace: Taxi Ray

Years after the last Checker Marathons were taken out of taxi service, Ray continued to drive people to their destinations, for free. Surprisingly he made a good living, by giving the free rides, and by just being Ray.


The "rides 4 U R Free" three license plates on the car once read, and an an advertisement on top was his own as well reading: "Ray For President". A huge supporter of The Mayor, Michael Bloomberg, he used to have the ad for Bloomberg, but when it became apparent Bloomberg wasn't throwing his hat in the presidential ring, Ray decided to run for president.

Old Taxi
Originally uploaded by Bodneyis
his previous cab 

Link here: "Taxi" Ray Kottner 
and a brief note on his passing here: Checker taxi stand

articles: On CBS, and The New York Times

If anyone has anything they'd like to add, perhaps those who've rode in his cab, or just talked with the man, please feel free to comment.


Anonymous said...

RIP Ray, seemed like a class guy

NYC taxi photo said...

Yeah I never met the guy, but I saw him driving around.

Anonymous said...

I'm happy to hear that the family will remove Taxi Ray's cab soon. I die see the notice posted on his cabbie today. My family and I have lived on the block for many years - and Ray was an integral part of our daily life. We just want him to be honoured and his cabbie properly taken care of - and of course someone gets to pour an ice cream as a libation to him.. I would like to be present when his cabbie is taken - I just feel like I have to be there for him. I was there the evening he died and don't think I will ever forget the experience. Much love to you all!

Dan Klang said...

Was this the Ray that grew up in the Bronx near west farms square
Did he raise weimaraners and own a Ford skyliner?
If it was my name is Dan Klang --- please contact me


Dan Klang said...

Is this the Ray Kottner that grew up in the Bronx near west farms square and raised weimaraners
He had a Ford Skyliner
He gave me my Weimaraner --- shadow
We used to eat at Tien Tsin in Harlem
His sister was Ginny as I recall
Contact me at

Dan Klang