On June 1, 2021, George G. Gray passed from this life to the next. Born December 24, 1929, in Stewart, TN, Mr. Gray was a 55-year resident of Waynesboro, TN. The practice of law, presiding over a courtroom, and raising his five children were his primary occupations. His favorite pastimes included hunting, fishing, walking the trails around his home, and later, traveling with his family. All of this was accomplished with the love of his life, his wife of nearly 64 years, Julia Graves Gray.
In 1947, Mr. Gray graduated from Erin High School and later enlisted with the U.S. Marines for the next four years. Thereafter he worked for the Tennessee Highway Patrol, received his undergraduate degree from Austin Peay University, and graduated from Vanderbilt University School of Law in 1959. Before moving to Waynesboro in 1966, Mr. Gray worked as a claims adjuster for Travelers Insurance, as an associate attorney for the law firm of John Grissim and Charles Cosner, and as a staff attorney for the Tennessee Department of Revenue including an appointment to the Alcohol Beverage Commission. Mr. Gray moved to Waynesboro to join Roy Haggard, Jr. in his law office in 1966 until Mr. Haggard’s death in 1968. At this crossroads, Mr. Gray opened his own law practice where he remained until his retirement on January 31, 2020, at the age of 90.
Our community benefited in various ways from Mr. Gray’s 54-year law practice and brilliant legal mind. For 50 of those years, he was the attorney for the Tennessee Valley Electric Cooperative (TVEC), Wayne County Bank, and the City of Waynesboro, and for close to ten years, he was appointed then elected General Sessions Judge. In addition, Mr. Gray was a founding member of the Rotary Club and remained an active member for 30 years. Over the course of those 30 years, he functioned in several officer capacities, including president, and became a Paul Harris Fellow. He was also a Shriner, a 32nd degree Mason, and attorney for the City of Clifton for several years. Finally, Mr. Gray served on a variety of committees for the Tennessee Bar Association throughout his professional life.
Preceded in death by his parents, Jonas D. and Grace Chadwick Gray; his daughter, Rebecca Lynn Gray; and his sisters, Velma Moore, Betty McAulay, and Hilda Cottrell; Mr. Gray is survived by his wife, Julia Graves Gray; his children, Stephen Chadwick Gray and his wife, Sally; David Brandon Gray and his fiancée, Beth; George Glenn Gray and his wife, Samantha; and Susan Leigh Gray Waggoner and her husband, Brian; as well as eight grandchildren, Brandi, Sarah, Ashlie, Matt, Brandon, Sam, Elizabeth, and Julia; nine great-grandchildren, Isabella, Hendrix, Gabriella, Preston, Kamden, Peyton, Reese, Jax, and Abel; and three nieces and one nephew, Jennifer, Jane, Linda, and Wayne. Mr. Gray is survived by too many grand-dogs and grand-cats to name (but Phoebe was his favorite and he hers).
A memorial service will be held for Mr. Gray at the First United Methodist Church in Waynesboro, TN, on Saturday, June 19, 2021, at 3:00 p.m. with visitation preceding the service at 1:00 p.m. Interment will follow on a future date. Memorial contributions may be made to the First United Methodist Church in Waynesboro, TN, to Alive Hospice in Nashville, TN, or to your preferred charity.
The world is a different place without you…Mr. Gray, you will be missed.
“Crossing the Bar”
By Alfred Lord Tennyson
Sunset and evening star,
And one clear call for me!
And may there be no moaning of the bar,
When I put out to sea…