Medical 02


Betty Jo Gray

July 30, 1922 ~ April 11, 2019 (age 96)

Betty Jo went to her Lord and Savior on April 11th, 2019 at Samaritan Hospice House in Albany, Oregon, with her two daughters by her side. 

She was born in Plummer, Idaho on July 30th, 1922 to Harold Floyd Bell and Emma Elizabeth Schmidt. She was the second of four siblings. The family traveled around Idaho, California and Oregon, finally settling down in Union, Oregon sometime in the 1930's. 

She graduated from Union High School in 1940. She went on to attend St. Luke's school of nursing in Boise, Idaho graduating in 1945. She took her pediatric training at Doernbecker Children's Hospital in Portland, Oregon. She was there during the polio outbreak. 

She married Harlan William McCrae in Union, Oregon in February 1945. Four children were born of this union. They lived in Union until moving to Newport, Oregon in 1948 where they bought a farm on Fruitvale, rd. They divorced in 1959 and she later married James Gray. 

In her long nursing career, she worked for Dr. Peter Long M.D. in Toledo, Oregon. He was, at the time, the one and only OBGYN (baby Dr.) in the area. She then worked at the Pacific Communities Hospital in Newport, Oregon as director of nurses and head surgery nurse. After leaving the hospital, she worked in Waldport, Oregon for Dr. Hayter, Dr. May and for Dr. Spence. After her retirement for the Doctors office, she went to work for senior services doing in home care. Her last job was working at Sea Aire in Yachats, Oregon. Betty Jo finally gave up her nursing career at age 84.

She was a member of the First Presbyterian church in Waldport, Oregon, where she served as a deaconess. She later attended the First Baptist church in Newport, Oregon. She was a member of the Beta Sigma Phi Sorority. She was a volunteer for the Children's Advocacy Center in Newport, Oregon. She did a mission trip to Mexico, driving her motorhome filled with teenagers. She loved to garden, knit, and make quilts. 

She loved to attend sporting events with her daughter, Sandi. She rarely missed a ball game her great grandchildren were participating in. She was a devoted and loving mother, grandmother, and great grandmother. She was a devoted friend to all she knew.

She is survived by her children: Sandi Wiles (Vern) of Newport, Oregon, Judith McDonough (Gary) of Payette, Idaho, and Ron McCray of Albany Oregon. She has 9 grandchildren, 2 step granddaughters, 14 great grandchildren, 11 great great children, and 6 step great grandchildren. Betty Jo is survived by her sister Geraldine Carlton of Wamer Robins, Georgia and bother Robert Bell of Corpis Cristi, Texas. Numerous nieces and nephews survive her as well.

She is preceded in death by her parents, Harold and Emma Bell, brother James Bell, son Richard McCrae, great granddaughter Sophia Vickery and husbands Harlan McCrae and James Gray. 

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to hospice or a charity of your choice. 

A celebration of life will be held July 27th, 2019. Contact family for more information

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