September 9, 1943 ~ October 23, 2022

Born in: Miami, Florida
Resided in: Lawrenceville, Georgia

Nancy Yeager Gray, age 79, of Lawrenceville, Georgia, died of Alzheimer’s on October 23, 2022. Nancy was born in Miami, Florida, on September 9, 1943, to Charles Gordon Yeager and Sara Landrum Yeager. Nancy was delighted at age five to gain an “older sister” when Sara’s youngest sister Patricia (then ten) came to live with them.

While a student at Florida State University, she met James Russell Gray on a blind date arranged by a Kappa Delta sorority sister—only she wasn’t his date! That didn’t deter Russell who spotted her at the library the very next day and asked her out himself. They were married April 24, 1965, in Miami, Florida. A natural beauty with thick red hair and a lovely smile, Nancy always looked put together as evidenced by her habit of applying lipstick before breakfast.

They lived in the Southeast during their early years of marriage. Nancy and Russell and their two daughters began attending a small Baptist church where the couple entered into a life-changing relationship with Jesus Christ. Together they sought to love God and love their neighbor.

The young family eventually made their home near Fort Worth, Texas, where Nancy later retired from teaching high school. She was known for her gracious Southern hospitality, such that her girls would be downhearted if the family didn’t have guests for Sunday dinner. She exhibited a servant’s heart and was truly helpful to those around her, especially Russell who often needed her level-headed assistance.

After retirement she and Russell moved to the Atlanta area to be near family. She was a member of 12Stone Church where she and Russell served side by side. She loved her seven grandchildren and took great delight in being present throughout their growing up years. Nana was always supportive of their many endeavors. Ever the thoughtful gift giver, she even paid for braces for all of them. She literally gave them smiles.

She loved to worship through song and believed in the power of prayer and practiced bringing her worries to Jesus. This was especially challenging in the early days of her Alzheimer’s diagnosis, but Jesus carried her gracefully, preserving the light in her eyes to the very end. Russell remained a devoted caregiver, supporting her with strength and tenderness every step of the way.

Nancy was preceded in death by her parents, Gordon and Sara Yeager, and her sister, Patricia Hart. She is survived by her husband of 57 years, Russell Gray; two daughters Laura Bachtel (Bryan) and Lisa Smith (Bill); her grandchildren Sara Bachtel, Alicia Bachtel Adams (Garrett), Maryellen Bachtel Pettibone (Stephen), Caleb Bachtel (Amanda), Josh Bachtel, Jess Smith, and Jana Smith; her great-granddaughter Ellamarie Adams; and many other extended family members who were touched by her gracious spirit.

Family will receive friends from 6-8 pm on Wednesday, October 26, 2022, at Wages and Sons in Lawrenceville. A celebration of life service will be held on Thursday, October 27, 2022, at 1 pm. at Wages and Sons Chapel in Lawrenceville, with Bill Smith officiating. Reception to follow. Flowers are welcome. However, if you prefer to make a donation, the family requests that it be made in memory of Nancy Gray to Alzheimer’s Association (alz.org).

Services

Visitation: October 26, 2022 6:00 pm - October 26, 2022 8:00 pm

Wages & Sons Gwinnett Chapel
1031 Lawrenceville Hwy.
Lawrenceville, GA 30046

770-277-4550

Celebration of Life: October 27, 2022 1:00 pm - October 27, 2022 2:00 pm

Wages & Sons Gwinnett Chapel
1031 Lawrenceville Hwy.
Lawrenceville, GA 30046

770-277-4550

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Guestbook

  1. I am sad along with you dear brother Russell. I am so happy that she was a devoted follower of her Savior and Lord, Jesus Christ. I love you Russell

  2. Nancy was truly a loving soul that made us feel so welcome. The love and devotion between Russell and her was wonderful to see. Our son, Brendan, introduced us to Nancy and Russell but the stories he had already shared made us feel we knew them even before we met.
    Her faith was such an inspiration and Heaven is more beautiful now.

    • Diane:

      Thanks so much for your words of kindness and hope. So glad to hear you were able to tune in online for her service.

      Russell

  3. CandleImageWe will dearly miss you beyond measure as your beauty graces the lights of heaven in your long awaited journey to see Jesus!
    Only heaven will reveal your gracious impact to so many here.

  4. CandleImageNancy was a beautiful soul who I know is with the Lord now! Russell and Nancy had a beautiful marriage that I continue to use as an example of my own. She will be very missed!

    • Carsyn:

      So glad to hear you were able to tune in online and am looking forward to connecting with your family at your daughter’s softball games.

      Thanks Russell

    • Bill:

      So glad to see you at the service for Nancy today. Hope to see you again on Saturdays at McDs.

      Russell

  5. The obituary and video are perfect tributes to a beautiful, godly lady. Our prayers are with you Russell, Laurel, and Lisa, and all your family. So thankful to have had you in our lives in Burleson those years ago, and in our hearts always.

    • Rick and Trish:

      Thanks so much for your response. Lets stay in touch.

      God bless you and your wonderful family.

      Russell (and for Nancy too)!

  6. CandleImageNancy was one of the most beautiful souls I ever had the honor of knowing. My boys and I were truly blessed to have her in our lives. RIP wonderful lady, you are home.
    Our condolences, prayers & love to Russell, the girls & the whole family.

  7. CandleImageMany joyous memories of Nancy will remain in our hearts. Her light shone brightly. Peace and grace to all.

  8. CandleImageWhat an honor it is to have been blessed to know you dear. Your sweet spirit will always be cherished.

  9. CandleImageWith deepest sympathy, I express my love to Russell, Laura, Lisa and the entire family. I truly loved Nancy and my life became much sweeter when I met her and the Gray family in Texas! Nancy was beautiful, kind, generous, and was a woman of grace and excellence. I will miss her so much. ❤️ Enjoy the presence of Jesus, Nancy!

  10. CandleImageFrom the moment we met Nancy and Russell we knew we had special friends for life. Nancy was such a beautiful friend and sister in Christ. Nancy’s beautiful smile could brighten up any room. Her laugh warmed our hearts, and we spent many precious moments in prayer and discussing how to tackle some of the unique challenges of illness. Nancy’s face lit up with love each and every time she spoke about Russell. She often spoke of her beautiful daughters and grandchildren with pride and joy. On one particular evening we spoke of heaven. Nancy said she looked forward to the day she would see Jesus face to face and be healed once and for all. My beautiful, sweet friend you are in the arms of our Savior and healed! This is not goodbye Nancy…… it’s just I will see you in a little while. Lifting Russell and the whole family up in prayer that the peace of our Lord Jesus Christ will surround you with comfort, strength, healing, and love.

  11. CandleImageThe ROBBINS family gives Russell and his family our Deepest condolences and continual prayer as you find a new normal with sister Nancy no longer being physically present with you and your family. If you need anything please just call.

  12. I pray that God comforts you, Russell and your family during this difficult time.
    I am so sorry for your loss. Wish I could be there with you.
    I send all my love to you, friend and your family.
    Don Pinkard

  13. Russell,
    My thoughts and prayers are with you. I wish you peace at this sad time, and hope that beautiful memories hold you firm.

  14. Oh, I know Nancy is loving being in the presence of her Lord! I am so happy for her, and those loved ones there. Nancy was a true servant of the Lord, and she shared His grace and her many talents with all she met. God answered my prayer for a sister when her dad, Gordon and my mother, Clara married in their 80s, and brought our families together. Nancy and Russell shared wonderful years and good times with us as our parents blessed each other. We treasure Nancy and Russell’s beautiful family as well. Nancy’s love and warmth filled our hearts with joy. Our prayers of comfort are flowing to Russell, Lisa, Laura and their families during these days. We are so grateful that the Lord brought us together for those very special years.

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