Jan Gray
1943 - 2020
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Jan Gray, 76, beloved wife of General Al Gray, United States Marine Corps (Ret), passed away peacefully Thursday, 30 January 2020, after a brief hospitalization.
Born on 3 July, 1943, along with her twin brother Jackie, in Houston, Texas, where her father, then 1stLt Ralph J. Goss of the U.S. Army Air Corps, had been stationed prior to going overseas as a B-24 Pilot during World War II. Then Captain Goss was shot down over Sardinia in the Mediterranean Sea on his 26th mission. He was picked up by a German PT Boat and was a Prisoner of War for nearly three years.
Jan and Jackie were abandoned by her mother on a Houston doorstep at age one. They were brought to Burlington, Vermont, by their loving Uncle Bud Brand and their Aunt Celia, who raised them for several years. Their father returned after the war and subsequently married Madeline (Babe) Walker of Rutland, VT. Later, Jan and Jackie joined them as her father remained in the U.S. AIr force serving in Texas, Massachusetts, Ohio, and Alaska until retirement as a Lieutenant Colonel. While serving at Wright-Patterson in Ohio, Jackie, then nine years old, was struck by a car and invalided for life, passing in 2008.
After high school, Jan graduated from Kathryn Gibbs Secretarial School in Boston and was employed for many years with the Mitre Corporation in Boston, Washington, DC and McLean, VA. She served as an analyst and secretary to the Engineer Department in support of the Defense Communication Planning Group (DSSG) at the U.S Naval Observatory. The DSSG was heavily involved in applying Sensor Technology, and other capabilities in Southeast Asia, during the Vietnam conflict. While there, she met then LTCol Gray who then headed the DSSG Intelligence Department in February 1968. They had their first date during the Labor Day weekend of 1969 upon his return from special operations in Vietnam. On that evening they fell in love forever.
In 1973, she was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis but it remained passive. She survived cancer twice as well as several other major surgeries and medical challenges. Throughout the years, she always remained optimistic and upbeat. She always had time for everyone and had a special smile for all. She had a particular interest and caring thoughts for the young people and their families who serve in our Armed Forces.
Over the years, she was deeply devoted to looking after Al's mother, particularly when he was overseas or on special assignments.
In 1979, Jan accepted a special assignment in Brussels, Belgium. While vIsiting at Quantico, VA prior to her departure, she observed his mother's health condition and arranged for her to see a doctor for evaluation. After the doctor discovered a Sciatic Nerve problem, she took a leave of absence from the Mitre Corporation and helped the mother to full recuperation during an extended stay in Florida. After a brief engagement, she and Al we're married on 27 July 1980 in Burlington, VT.
In addition to serving at Quantico where Al Gray commanded the Development Center, Jan was at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina from 1981 thru 1984 while her husband commanded the 2d Marine Division and then in Norfolk from 1984 to 1987 when he commanded Fleet Marine Forces (FMF) Atlantic, FMF Europe and the II Marine Amphibious Force. From 1987 to 1991, she carried out her responsibilities to Marine and Navy personnel, and their families, as the Marine Corps Commandant's wife. She was also a strong supporter of local activities in the Washington, DC area.
In 1991, at a private ceremony, she was awarded the Department of the Navy's Distinguished Public Service Award for her dedication to a wide range of family and family support programs. The citation read: "Recognizing the direct relationship between combat readiness and family well-being, Mrs. Gray gave unselfishly of her time and efforts to improve the quality of life and to increase the support for all members of our military family. Of particular note was her efforts to support the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society, the Marine Corps Scholarship Program, the Navy Wifeline Program, the Marine Corps Toys for Tots Program, and her support for the families of casualties of the Beirut Bombing. Mrs, Gray's contributions have reflected great credit upon herself and have been of inestimable value to the Department of the Navy."
She was awarded the Marine Corps League Distinguished Service Award in 1985. Mrs. Gray was granted sponsorship of the dock landing ship USS COMSTOCK (LSD 45) in 1988. Throughout the years after her husband's military retirement, she remained steadfast in support of our military service personnel and their families.
Unable to have children, Jan had a great love for dogs, particularly her large Poodles Sport and Noir. She also cherished her miniature Poodles, their Portuguese Water Dog and her husband's many Labrador Retrievers through the years. She lost her precious last miniature Poodle Cozy III (pictured) in August 2019. She is survived by her husband and her step-mother, Madeline Goss.
Funeral and Burial Services will be at Arlington National Cemetery at a later date with her husband, as per her wishes. Jan's favorite charities were the Semper Fi Fund/America Fund www.org and the Marine Corps-Law Enforcement Foundation www.mc-lef.org.
Semper Fidelis


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Published in Jacksonville Daily News from Feb. 7 to Feb. 8, 2020.
Memories & Condolences
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45 entries
February 20, 2020
Dear General Gray - I have just learned about the loss of your beloved Jan. I am so very sorry to hear of this. Gary Potts shared her obituary with me and it is clear she was a wonderful woman who touched so many lives - what a gift she was! While I didn't know Jan, I did know you a little, through my dad, Marty Johnson, who worked with you at the Development Center. My dad just thought the world of you. Your name was mentioned around our household for several years and always in the best light. I also recall that you came to my wedding, which really meant a lot to both me and my dad. We lost my dad two years ago on Feb 7. He wasn't sick. Just went to sleep one night and snuck away. We miss him very much. Thank you for the great years you made possible for my dad and our family. I know my dad would be devastated to hear of your loss. On his behalf, I send the deepest of condolences. (Jana Johnson DiCarlo)
Jana DiCarlo
Friend
February 16, 2020
Dearest General Gray: I just learned of Jan's death; so sorry for your loss. She was such a special lady, who truly Loved you and your Marine Corps. I will miss her great smile & that laugh of hers. All Lemnah family members send our condolences, to you & family. God Bless & take care. Marlys Lemnah(Beirut widow)
Marlys Ann Lemnah
February 14, 2020
My deepest sympathies.May the God of all comfort strengthen the entire family during this time of sorrow. Always remember that God keeps in his memory those whom we lose because they are precious in his eyes (Psalms 116:15)

February 12, 2020
I can't count the wonderful memories and times spent with you and Jan the four years Bart was with you as Aide. Jan was everyone's inspiration, roll model, and most of all friend. I am so sorry for your loss and I know how much she is going to be missed. Take care of you.
Debbie DeForrest Ferebee
February 11, 2020
So sorry for your loss General. Prayers be with in your time of grief.

I served with you in 2/2 in 84-87.
Gilbert & Reba Boyd, CWO-4, USMC, ret
Gilbert Boyd
February 11, 2020
Jack and I send our deepest sympathy on your loss. Just a month ago I received an email with a photo taken at your house after the Evening parade. The Youngs, Mufflers and you and Jan all looked so young and happy. Thanks for the memories. Know you will have many memories to help comfort your at this time. To quote you "take care of yourself and take care of each other."
Judith Young
February 11, 2020
Judy and Jack from your home state of New Jersey send our deepest sympathy. Just the other day I got an email with a picture of us, the Mufflers and you and Jan. It was taken when we were at your house after the evening parade. Thanks for the memories. Know you will have many to comfort you in the days ahead. "Take care of yourself and take care of each other." Will always remember how you ended your speeches.
February 11, 2020
Al,
Judy and I are sad, but we know how much she has already given to us and how well she has been received by God. She will live in our hearts always.
Mal O'Neill
Lt Gen Malcolm O'Neill
February 11, 2020
General Gray,
Terry and I are sorry for the lose of Jan. She is in our thoughts and prayers. Semper Fidelis
JOSEPH P LOOKER
February 10, 2020
General Gray, I am so sorry to hear of Jan's passing. Sending you my heart felt condolences. Edward Schriber, Col., Ret., USMC.
Edward Schriber
February 10, 2020
An amazing Lady who embraced Our Corps values. Thank you for all you did for Corps and Country. Semper Fidelis
Col &
February 10, 2020
General Gray and Family,

Jim and I have such special memories of our time with you and Jan and the privilege for his aide position that allowed us to witness first hand how special she was to you and to the USMC. She was an
inspiration to me in my future responsibilities in her role and her smile, joy of life, and warmth engaged everyone as soon as they met her. We pray that the wonderful memories and the knowledge of so many who send our love will bring you peace and solace. God bless and we will never forget your special lady!
Diane and Jim Jones
February 10, 2020
Although we never met may God receiveyou with open arms and prayers to General Gray and the entire family Semper Fidelis.
Cpl. Alan
Served In Military Together
February 10, 2020
Sorry for your loss sir, Semper Fi
February 10, 2020
General Gray
June and I send you our sincerest condolences for the loss of Jan. You're at the top of our thoughts at this sad time.
Jim & June Ezell
February 10, 2020
General Gray,
Our condolences to you. Jan was a wonderful woman that we always enjoyed seeing when our paths crossed at our neighborhood restaurant. Our sincere sympathy at your loss. Grant and Beverly.
February 10, 2020
General Gray,

I'm so sorry for my delay in responding to your loss. I am just learning of Mrs. Gray's passing. I know how much you loved her, and I will keep you in my thoughts for renewed peace and comfort.

I loved Mrs. Gray and I have many fond memories of my time with her in Norfolk. She was a leader, mentor, and friend. I hope you know how special you both are to me.

Much love,


Lucy Bell
Lucy Bell
February 10, 2020
GO WITH GOD
February 10, 2020
General Gray and family my deepest sympathies.
Cpl. J.W. Muehling III USMC 1974/1978
February 10, 2020
My thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family, Gen Gray. May you find comfort in the many memories of your wonderful spouse. Semper Fidelis.
Rick Lottie
February 10, 2020
#262 Onclow County Det.
Gen. Gray, my sincerest condolences on your loss. Celebrate her amazing life and know she's never far from you.

Semper Fidelis
Julianne Froncek
February 10, 2020
Semper Fidelis Mrs. Gray
A sincere "Thank You" to Mrs. Gray for her many years of service and dedication as you were so supportive over the years. To her husband General Gray along with her mother, relatives, and friends I offer you my sincere condolences. May Jan rest in eternal peace.
JAMES FLORES
February 10, 2020
General Gray,

Hopefully, these messages of love and kindness will bring a bit of peace to the pain I'm sure you are in. Your non-blood family members around the globe are grieving with you. Jan was a wonderful woman and a shining star on the Marine Corps and she will be missed.

Semper Fi
Paul Freitas
February 10, 2020
My sincere condolences to Gen. Gray and the family. I'm so sorry to hear of her passing. Rest in Peace, Ma'am. She was loved by alot and will be missed.
Nathan Blevins
February 10, 2020
Dear General Grey? I want to give you my deepest condolences on the loss of wonderful wife Jan. It's hard to lose the love of your life. You have always been a true leader and an inspiration to so many and very loved.My prayers are with you. God Bless You
Heidi Crudale LeGault
February 10, 2020
Sending prayers and condolences to General Gray, who was Commandant when I was in the Marine Corps. I would also see and speak to him often after retirement when we both worked at the NAVSEA HQ building in Crystal City, VA during the 90s. Semper Fi!
Casandra Johnson
February 10, 2020
May you Rest in Peace in the arms of our God. My condolences to Gen. Gray and family.
Cpl. S. Kyriacos
February 9, 2020
Gen. Gray, I was an MP at Quantico when you were there. Though we have never met, we share our Marine Corps brotherhood and our continued service through MCLEF. I send my deepest condolences to you, your family and friends on the loss of your beloved Jan and I pray for you to find comfort in his arms knowing she rests in his Kingdom, pain-free and watching over you.
Robert Castaldi
February 9, 2020
May our loving God draw you close to His breast as He blesses you for the wonderful loving support and care that you gave to others. And may He cover your husband with His grace to ease his loss until you both are reunited in heaven for all eternity. AMEN
Major Bob Jordan
February 9, 2020
Rest peacefully, beautiful lady. My heart goes out to Gen. Gray and all who knew this kind woman. She will be missed.
Jeanie Jensen
February 9, 2020
General Gray:
So sorry for your family's great loss. Thinking of you.
Joseph Galloway
February 9, 2020
Prayers and thoughts are with you Boss. Sorry I never got to meet Jan, but I know she was an amazing person and filled your life with much JOY. Semper fi. LtCol Barry Montgomery
Barry Montgomery
February 9, 2020
Betty joins me in sending our deepest condolences on Jan's loss. As individuals and as a couple you have been inspirational examples who have changed individual lives as well as our Marine Corps. God Bless and semper fidelis, Tony and Betty Wood.
Tony Wood
February 9, 2020
General,
So sorry for your loss. You are in our prayers.
George Jones
February 9, 2020
General Gray,

On behalf of the Retired Communications Officer community, please accept our heartfelt condolences for your loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. May Jan rest in peace.

Marty Lazar
February 9, 2020
Rest in peace Mrs. Gray. Your duties here on earth are well done!
Marilyn Essink
February 8, 2020
Our thoughts and prayers are with Gen Gray and knowing that our Good Lord has taken Jan to a better place. All our Love.
Charles & Mazi Rinehart
February 8, 2020
General, Our most heartfelt condolences.
Jim & Bonnie Carothers
February 8, 2020
Jan Gray was an incredible individual and I will never forget her. Her passing leaves a large hole in the heart of a lot of people, in particular in the heart of General Al Gray.
Bobby Butcher
February 8, 2020
My profound condolences to you, General ! You have been one of my hero's since we met many years ago. My prayers go out to you and Jan.
Michael Fiorillo
February 8, 2020
Sincere condolences and deepest respects.
GI and Sandy Wilson
February 7, 2020
GREATEST OF SOUL MATES.WE LOVE TO SEE HER AT FUNCTIONS WITH HER SPECIAL PET DOG.GENERAL GRAY ALWAYS HAD AN EYE FOR THE FINEST.
SEMPER FI AND RIP
JIM AND SARA LIVINGSTON
JAMES LIVINGSTON
February 7, 2020
She was the perfect Marine wife. My deepest sympathies. I will say it for her-Semper Fi.
Edward Dauksz
February 7, 2020
Sorry for your loss General Semper Fi may God bless you during this time of sorry
Deny Grover
February 7, 2020
Such a lovely lady! I only met her one time but the experience was truly exceptional.
General Gray, you were certainly most fortunate to have a wonderful sweetheart and companion such as Jan. You always did make the BEST choices!
May God continue to bless you and your family.
Warmest Regards and Continued Admiration,
Bob and Mary Wilson
Bob and Mary Wilson
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