Willis Victor Ernest Gray ’47

Willis Victor Ernest Gray ’47 died on July 23, 2004, in Haverhill, Massachusetts.

Born on August 23, 1923, in Littleton, MA, he prepared for college at Littleton High School and attended Boston University from 1941 until February of 1943, when he entered the U.S. Army Air Forces in World War II and spent a year in the basic pre-meteorology program at Bowdoin. He attained the rank of second lieutenant in the Air Forces before entering Bowdoin in February of 1946 as a member of the junior class and becoming a member of Theta Delta Chi Fraternity. Following his graduation cum laude in February of 1947, he received a master of arts degree in history from Boston University in 1948 and joined the faculty at Ashby (MA) High School. He also taught at Braintree (MA) High School from 1951 to 1953, when he received a master of education degree from Boston University. He was principal of Shoreham (VT) High School for two years, principal of Brighton High School in Island Pond, VT, for three years, principal of Hardwick (MA) High School for two years, and a teacher with the Haverhill School Department from 1963 until 1972. He was a salesman for encyclopedias and sets of books for schools and public libraries with United Educators of Lake Bluff, IL, for some years. Before his retirement in 2001, he was a lieutenant of security at the Internal Revenue Service in Andover, MA. A member of the Byfield Parish Church in Georgetown, MA, he was married in 1957 to Frances E. Nowell, who died in 1994, and is survived by two sons, James Gray of Gardner, MA, and Dean W. Gray of Wells; a daughter, Barbara G. O’Connell of Maine; two brothers, Eugene Gray of Kennebunkport and Laurie Gray of Florida; seven grandchildren; and a great-grandchild.