John Bray was born on the 7th of December 1818 the son of Luke Bray of Ballycarrane, Thurles, County Tipperary and Ellen Ronayne. He was a twin, his sister was christened Johanna. Their baptismal sponsors were Luke Bray, Mary Ann Lalor, James Bray and Mary Kearney
On the 7th inst .the lady of Luke Bray Esq. of Ballycurrane of twins a son and a daughter. About a year back this lady had the same good fortune.
John Bray was involved, with three cousins, in the accident at Cabra Bridge on the River Suir which resulted in the drowning of John Bray O'Brien, J.P., of Turtulla, 31st of July 1839.
Tipperary North Riding Summer Assizes 1839. Thurles 1st August: John Bray O'Brien J.P. of Turtulla drowned. With his two brothers and his cousin german, John Bray Esq., went boating on River Suir, very swollen after recent heavy rain, on Wednesday 31 July. At bridge of Cabra, the boat struck a concealed weir and capsized. The other three scrambled ashore but O'Brien was cast headlong into the water and drowned. He merited high esteems (sic) and affection. Considerate and indulgent as a landlord: friend and benefactor to all in neighbourhood: upright and impartial as a magistrate.
In 1860 John Bray was found to be of unsound mind. He had been unwell for the previous 18 years – possibly since the year after the drowning at Cabra Bridge.
From 1860 he lived in residential care in Hartfield House, Dublin. He had a farm of 138 acres from which he derived an income. He was single.
John Bray died in 1872. His place of residence on the death certificate was given then as Westmoreland St., Dublin. Charles Toole had a seed merchants at 41 Westmoreland Street, Toole and Mackey, nursery and seedsman and florists. He was married to John Bray’s first cousin Mary Bourke. This was later changed in the death record to Ballycurrane, Thurles. The informant was Denis Bray O'Brien, Ardfort House, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.
He is buried in Glasnevin Cemetery.