Obituary of Lillian Gray
Lillian Wilkerson Gray was born on September 19, 1937, to the parentage of Delton Wilkerson and Madervy Davis Wilkerson. A cradle Methodist, Lillian established her relationship with Jesus Christ at Spring Creek Church, Centerville, Texas. Later, the family moved to Waco, Texas where Lilian continued her life with Jesus Christ at Jones Chapel Methodist church. She continued her journey with God as a young adult at Saint Paul United Methodist Church, where she was an active and faithful member for sixty-seven years.
Lillian attended the public schools in Waco and graduated from A.J. Moore High School in 1954. While at Moore High, Lillian participated in the Drill Team and consistently made the Honor Roll. She received a Bachelor of Science from Bishops College and a Master’s in Liberal Arts from Southern Methodist University.
Lillian Wilkerson and E. L. Gray were longtime friends, and their friendship culminated in marriage in 1954. The newlyweds made Dallas, Texas their permanent residence.
God graced E.L. and Lillian with seven children (six boys and one girl): Rodney Dwain, Cornelius Rayford, Everett Lynn, Reginald, Keith, Mark Anthony, Regina Michele, Randal Pierre and Robert .
Mrs. Gray taught in the Dallas Independent School District as an elementary teacher for more than twenty-five years. She was honored to be named Teacher of The Year while at Lisbon Elementary. A strict grammarian, Lillian demanded correct pro-nuhn-see-ey shuhn. While at school, home or church, Lillian was always teaching.
Lillian and E. L.’s home was a sanctuary for her siblings, nieces, nephews, and their children’s friends. One was always welcome in their home. She especially enjoyed babysitting her grandchildren and great-nieces and nephews. She would complain when called upon at the last moment, all while preparing for an
going overboard for the arrival of her precious cargo – grandchildren, nieces and nephews.
Lillian found great solace at her church, Saint Paul United Methodist. It was at Saint Paul where Lilian cherished working to advance God’s kingdom on earth. At Saint Paul, she had many assignments, including Sunday School Superintendent, Chair of Women’s Day Planning Committee and at-large member of the Church Council. Her most cherished participation was in her Sunday School or Bible Classes, either as student or facilitator.
Lillian loved Saint Paul United Methodist church. It was where she established friendships for life. She had many long telephone conversations with her church friends which enriched her spirit and added years to her life.
Lillian enjoyed all company. She loved shopping, dressing, and styling her hats. Regardless of the occasion, Lillian, never left home without a hat adorning her head.
Lillian Gray was predeceased by her husband, E.L. Gray, sons; Rodney, Everett, Reginald, Mark Anthony, Randal, and grandson Quentin. She is survived by her children, Cornelius Rayford and Regina Gray Clark; grandchildren; Yolanda Hicks, Shalanda Culclager (Dexter), Rodney Perkins Gray, Everett C. Gray, Gary D. Clark , and Reginald K. Gray Jr.; 10 great grandchildren and 4 great, great grandchildren; two sisters; Teaberta Black (Waco) and Teabertha McGowan (Waco); devoted nephew, Ronald D. Henderson.
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