Marion E. Gray was born April 8, 1934, in Chehalis, Wash., to Minnie and Melvie Lowry. She died March 16, 2021, in Centralia, Wash.
Marion was preceded in death by her husband, Major Gray; sister, Mildred Enger; daughter-in-law, Sandee Gray; and son-in-law, Dave Barlow.
She is survived by her five children, Sue Barlow, Linda (Andy) Styger, Wayne (Pia) Gray, Ken Gray (Kristin Sabin), and Darrell Gray. She is remembered as “Gram” to grandchildren, Candace and Matt Barlow, Samantha, Sheena and Shane Styger, Connor, Blake, Austin, Kyle, Darren, and Rachel Gray, Jonathon Gray and Sasha Sellers, Rylie and Easton Gray; and several great-grandchildren.
She grew up on Newaukum Hill on the family farm in the house her father built. As a girl, she loved riding her horse and was active in 4-H. She graduated in the Top Ten from W.F. West High School in the class of 1952. She loved to dance as a young woman and met her husband at a dance in Olympia. He was a soldier at Fort Lewis hailing from Louisiana. They married on Halloween of 1952, while he had a three day pass off the base. After his discharge, they moved to Louisiana where their first child was born, two years later. They then relocated to Washington State six months after the baby was born. They settled on the family farm on Newaukum Hill. Four more children came long as Marion helped with life on the farm. She baled hay, cooked dinners, canned produce from huge gardens, grew flowers, and hosted church and family gatherings. She spent months planning the family Christmas. She enjoyed supporting her many grandchildren’s activities as they grew. Marion loved to travel, and she enjoyed road trips to visit family all over the United States, especially to Louisiana and Alaska.