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Charles Henry Gray, of 5541 Belle Pond Drive, North Chesterfield, Virginia 23234 departed this life at Chippenham Hospital, Richmond, Virginia on June 5, 2019. Charles was born on March 20, 1953, to the late Thelma and Herman Henry Gray, of Williamsburg, Virginia.
He was educated in the Williamsburg-James City County Public School System, graduating from James Blair High School with the Class of 1971. He continued his education receiving a Bachelor of Arts degree from Virginia Union University and a Master of Education in Educational Administration Supervision from Virginia State University. He was a devoted educator for over forty years. He worked at Beaumont Detention Center as a classroom teacher, providing a positive influence for many troubled teens, and eventually worked his way up to Assistant Principal. Charles was well known in the community, often being stopped by former students who praised his mentorship and listed him as an inspiration to change their lives for the better. Later in life, he decided to change career paths to work with kids with disabilities and went back to school to earn a special education teaching certification. Charles was known to never miss work, showing up day after day even during his radiation and chemotherapy treatments, until finally, his doctor insisted he stay home to focus on his health.
He was a loving father to two daughters and a grandfather to three grandsons. Everyone that knew Charles knew how much he enjoyed sports. He was a star football player in high school and college and was also passionate about basketball. During his time off from work, he enjoyed relaxing on the couch and watching almost any competitive sport. If it was on ESPN, he was a fan. He also learned to love soccer from his two older grandsons who are active participants. One of Charles’s favorite hobbies was gardening around his home. He enjoyed the beauty of nature. His daughters have many lovely memories with their father, visiting parks, beaches, lakes, and outdoor festivals.
Charles leaves to cherish fond memories with his precious children, Chanel Zelaya, of Dumfries, VA, and Celeste Gray, of Washington, D.C.; loving and devoted former wife, Geneva Gray, of Germantown, MD; grandsons (the joy of his life) Christian and Nicholas Zelaya, and Zacarías Barrera, all of Dumfries, VA.; brothers Randy Gray (Patricia), of Hampton, VA, Terry Gray, of Williamsburg, VA, Larry Gray (Tracey), of Dinwiddie, VA, Tony Gray (Michelle), of Newport News, VA, and Ron Gray, of Newport News, VA; sisters, Dolly Gray Crews, of Virginia Beach, VA, Jeannie Wallace, of Williamsburg, VA, Thelma Amos (John), of Hampton, VA, Audrey Gray, of Williamsburg, VA, Wanda Long (Donald), of Virginia Beach, VA, Tina Henderson (Alphy), of New Kent, VA, and Hope Gray, of Newport News, VA.; aunts, Cora Jones, of Newport News, VA and Louise Holmes, of Williamsburg, VA.; uncle, Frank Gray, of Newport News, VA; many treasured nephews, nieces, cousins and friends.
A celebration of his life will be held at 12:00 noon Saturday, June 15, 2019, in Mt. Pleasant Baptist Church, 4002 Ironbound Road, Williamsburg, VA. 23188. Interment will follow in the Church Cemetery. Mr. Gray may be viewed Friday evening from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. in the Funeral Home. The Family will be receiving friends 308 Carriage Road, Williamsburg, VA 23188.
Professional services entrusted to the staff of Whiting’s Funeral Home, 7005 Pocahontas Trail, Williamsburg, Virginia 23185. 757-229-3011. whitingsfuneralhome.com