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During World War II served with the U.S. Air Force Theodore James Gray was born Nov. 26, 1919, in Sulphur Springs, Ark., to Roy James Gray and Jessie Christianson Gray. He departed this life in Mt. Vernon, Mo., on June 24, 2008, at the age of 88.
He spent his early life in Arlington, S.D., then in 1935 moved with his family to Ava where his father ran the Ava Mill; he graduated from Ava High School in 1937. He attended Iberia Academy in Iberia, Mo., and Drury College where he earned a degree in music.
During World War II he served with the U.S. Army Air Force and in 1942 married Annie Ruth Martin; to this union two daughters were born. In Springfield he worked at Hoover Music Co., the Ozark Camera Shop, and as an announcer at KTTS.
Ted possessed a beautiful singing voice and was well known as a soloist at Ava High School, several Springfield churches, and the Springfield Little Theater.
He was preceded in death by his parents and wife; his sister, Charlene Kester, of Ava, his sister, Maxine Ross, of Texas. Three days after his own death, he was joined by his brother, Bob Gray, of Michigan.
He is survived by his daughter, Barbara and husband, Lance Massey, of Trenton, Mich., and daughter, Dorothy and husband, Chris Straw, of Springfield; grandchildren, Jonathan Straw and wife, Lynn, of California, Kristin Straw of Chicago, and Danny Straw, of Springfield; his brother, Ronnie Gray and wife Bonnie, of Topeka, Kan.; and nieces and nephews including Marilyn Alms and Gary Kester, both of Ava.
Funeral services and burial were Thursday, June 26, at the Missouri Veterans Cemetery in Springfield.