Glyn Starling Gray

November 28, 2010 • Obituaries

Services are scheduled for 1 p.m., Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2010, at Dexter United Methodist Church for Glyn “Giss” Starling Gray, who passed away Nov. 23, 2010, at her home. The Rev. Phillip Grassie and the Rev. Jim Bignell will officiate. Interment will follow in Woodbine Cemetery in Artesia. Glyn was born on April 9, 1926, in Bradley, Ark., to John William and Claudia Starling, who preceded her in death. Those left behind to cherish her memory are two sons, Johnny Gray and Donald Gray; her sister, Helen Johnann Starling, of Los Alamos; and Mary Bryant, who became like a daughter when she joined the family in 1989. Also surviving are nieces, Norma Spoonts Stamps, of Arkansas, LaRita Spruell, of Bradley, Ark., and LaVerne Keahey, of Maumelle, [auth] Ark.; nephew, Tom Burks, of Texarkana, Ark.; and many nieces and nephews of the Gray family. She leaves many cherished friends in the Dexter community. Glyn graduated from Dexter High School in 1944 and attended New Mexico State University to study home economics. While there, she was an active member of 4H, and as a freshman won a $50 scholarship and a trip to attend the 23rd annual 4H Club Congress meeting at the World’s Fair in Chicago, in 1944. Glyn married W.D. “Billie” Gray on Jan. 2, 1945, at Dexter Methodist Church. They resided in Artesia for the next six years where their first son, Johnny, was born. In 1951, they moved to the “Starling Farm” in Dexter, which they bought and it became “Gray Farm.” A second son, Donald, was born there and Glyn raised her family as a busy farm wife, businesswoman and mother, for 59 years. Glyn was active in the Dexter School PTA and was president for two years. She was a member of the Dexter Methodist Church, where she taught Sunday school, was church school superintendent and directed the youth choir. In 1966, she became director of the adult choir, and was church historian and membership chairman for many years. In 1984, she began substitute teaching at Dexter Municipal School and in 1988, she became a teacher for the Title I program which later became Chapter I. She helped to launch the HOST program in the elementary school, where she touched many young lives with her love of teaching and helping others to succeed. She enjoyed the relationship that she shared with the administrators, staff and students for 23 years, until retirement. The family would like to send a special thank you to family friends Kelly Lusk, Rose Acosta, Dova Callihan and Jennifer Devore. She was preceded in death by her husband of 64 years, W.D. “Billie” Gray; her parents; and four sisters from Arkansas, Cecil Dismuke, Sue Hammon, Christine Puska and Margaret Burks; and two nephews, Jim Puska and John Robert Burks.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in loving memory to Dexter United Methodist Church, PO Box 312, Dexter, NM 88230.

Pallbearers will be Sandie Bell, Daniel Sigala, Bob McKelvey, Tom King, Larry Marshall and Jeff Weathers. Honorary pallbearers will be Chuck Coll, Dennis Pabst, Ben Kerr, Marvin Bramblett, Paul Drum and Frank Compos.

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