Howard M. Gray Sr.

Jan 07, 2013

Howard M. Gray Sr. died Jan. 6, 2013, at Harrington Court Health Care Center in Colchester, Conn. He was born in 1920 in East Blue Hill, Maine, son of the late Herman O. and Annie Estella (Cook) Gray.

Howard was a veteran of World War II, having served overseas as a member of the Second Air Commando Group in the C.B.I. Theater. In 2011, the State of Connecticut awarded Howard the Medal of Honor in appreciation for his military service.

Following discharge from the service in 1945, he graduated from the Roosevelt School of Aviation at Roosevelt Field on Long Island, N.Y., He was subsequently employed as an aircraft mechanic and pilot for several years. Howard and his twin brother Herbert enjoyed operating a flying service out of the Winterport Airport for several years. He married Sylvia Alley of Winterport in 1947.

In 1950, he joined the Management Team of Raytheon Company at Laboratory 16 in Waltham, Mass., where the Sparrow Air to Air Missile was being developed. Following development of the missile, he moved into pilot production at the Raytheon Plant in Lowell, Mass.

1956 saw the attainment of his long time wish, to move back to the coast of Maine, where he obtained employment at Northern Chemical Industries in Searsport. From 1959 until 1980 he enjoyed service as a rural mail carrier in Stockton Springs, retiring in 1980. He also became deeply involved in community affairs, orchestrating the installation of the concrete boat launch in Stockton Harbor, as well as other projects.

In addition to his parents, Howard was predeceased by his daughter Joanne Camille, sister Mabel, twin brother Herbert, brother Almerin “Um,” sister Marian Bowden and sister Beatrice (“Bea”) McGraw.

He is survived by his wife of 65 years, Sylvia, and his two sons and daughter-in-laws Howard “Mac” Gray, Jr. and wife Marion of Old Town and Donald Jon Gray and wife Dianne of Lebanon, Conn. He is also survived by four grandchildren, Tesche, Ellisha “Ellie,” Vanessa, and John Howard “Jack” Gray, as well as two great grandchildren, Michael Konarsky and Evan Hancock.

The family would like to thank the management and staff at Harrington Court for the wonderful care Howard received while living there. Howard’s upbeat and "can-do" approach to life will be greatly missed by family and friends alike.

At Howard’s request there will be no funeral. A private committal service at Oak Hill Cemetery in Winterport will be held in the Spring. Those who wish may make a donation in his memory to the Stockton Springs Ambulance Service, Stockton Springs, Maine, 04981 or to the Jerry W. Dobbins American Legion Post 157 Stockton Springs, Maine, 04981.

Care of arrangements has been entrusted to the Aurora-McCarthy Funeral Home of Colchester.

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