Helen Charlene Gray, 86, of Cowen passed away peacefully on Monday, February 7, 2022 at home surrounded by her family.
Born December 28, 1935 in Richwood, WV, she was the daughter of the late Oris and Mildred (Edwards) Smith who resided in the logging town of Three Forks, WV.
This is where she spent her early years, until the family moved to Upperglade.
Charlene was a true farm girl, helping to tend to animals and the garden, as well as her younger siblings. She was an avid reader, and often told her family that as a student she read every book in the Cowen High School Library. Charlene graduated from CHS in 1954; prior to graduation, she began dating Bill Gray. Later that year, she began studying at Fairmont Business College to become a Secretary. On June 1, 1956, she and William were married, as he began medical school and they started their family, eventually returning to Cowen. She was a member of the Trinity United Methodist Church and Order of Eastern Star Post #161. Charlene was Bill’s wife, helpmate, life partner, and love, helping him in his medical practice for many years. They were married for 59 years (until his death in 2015).
In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, William B. Gray, D.O.; sisters: Betty Kathleen and Elenor Smith; and son-in-law, Mike Ritchie.
Charlene is survived by her 3 children: Edward (Dana) Gray of Fairmont, Janet (Mike) Mathes, and Barbara Ritchie, both of Cowen; eight grandchildren: Jacqui Boyce, Amanda (Gareth) Markwardt, Laura Snyder, Matt (Brittany) Ritchie, Chad Mathes, Ryan (Jamie) Mathes, Daryl Lynne (Benjamin) Rush, and Alex (fiancé, Erin) Gray ; 15 great-grandchildren; sisters: Shirley Michael of Ft. Lupton, CO and Sharon Riding of Cowen; brothers: John (Jackie) Smith of Upperglade, Benny Smith of Farmington, and Stanley (Debbie) Smith of Upperglade; and a host of nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends to mourn her passing.
Services will be held 1pm, Saturday, February 12, 2022 at Trinity United Methodist Church, Cowen, with Pastor Jenny Coleman officiating.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Charlene’s memory to Trinity United Methodist Church or West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine in Lewisburg. For those unable to attend in person, the services will be live-streamed via the Facebook of her daughter, Barbara Ritchie.
Friends may join the family for a visitation two hours prior to the services.
Online condolences may be sent to the family at www.adamsreedfh.com
Adams-Reed Funeral Home, Cowen, is honored to be serving the Gray family.