Chester L.'s Story
Chester L. Gray, Jr., died at his home on April 26, 2017, from natural causes. He was 84.
He was born in Birmingham, Ala., and grew up in Birmingham and Montgomery, Ala., where he played baseball and was an accomplished trumpet player and band leader as a young man.
He attended Harvard University as a Navy ROTC scholar and graduated cum laude in 1954. Days later, Mr. Gray married his wife ,Barbara, whom he had met on his first day of college. They were devoted, loving partners for 58 years, with three sons, Skip, Scott, and Evan.
Mr. Gray served as a Lieutenant J.G. and gunner's mate in the U.S. Navy from 1954 to 1957, stationed in Key West and Charlestown, Mass. He graduated from Harvard Law School in 1960 and practiced law at the firm Simpson Thacher & Bartlett in New York City for six years. Mr. Gray then practiced corporate law in Massachusetts and Connecticut with GTE Sylvania and its parent company. He retired in 1990 as vice president and assistant general counsel of GTE Corporation.
Mr. Gray and his wife spent their remaining years in their 19th Century farmhouse in Grafton, N.H., where he enjoyed renovating and managing the property, and gardening and mowing the fields. They also traveled extensively, and enjoyed attending annual family reunions with Mr. Gray's cousins and his brother, Neal.
Mr. Gray loved hearing and playing music, reading history and archaeology, and watching and listening to the Gaithers' Gospel shows. He was a lifelong Red Sox fan, as one of his great aunts had married the team's owner.
Mr. Gray was predeceased by his beloved wife, Barbara in 2013. He is survived by his brother, Neal and wife, Beverly; his three sons; daughters-in-law, Margaret and Erika; grandchildren, Michael, Brian, and Molly; and great-grandchild, William.
Chester Gray was a kind, good man, a devoted husband and father, a good friend, and a good neighbor. His family misses him and his wife, grieves their absence, and celebrates their lives and legacy.
A memorial service for Chester L. Gray, Jr., is planned for 2 p.m. on Saturday, June 24, at First Assembly of God, 3 Dolloff Ave., Beverly, MA 01915. Call 978-927-1862 for information.
Charitable contributions may be made in memory of Mr. Gray to The Friends of Grafton Library, P.O. Box 323, Grafton, NH 03240.
Published on  June 11, 2017