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Friday, April 4, 2014
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ELLEN GRAY

Ellen, 66, passed away surrounded by her loving family and dear friends in Key West, Florida on March 31, 2014 due to complications from Primary Peritoneal Cancer.

Ellen was born in Elkins, West Virginia on August 6, 1947. She grew up in Phoenix, Arizona until she went to college in Columbia, Missouri at Stephens College then graduated from the University of Missouri with a degree in Art History. It was in college she met and married her husband of almost 45 years, Dr. Peter Gray. They had one child, Ryan, who currently resides outside Chicago with his family.

They lived in many locations from Kapalua in Maui, Seattle, Del Mar, Seal Beach & Vista in California, Boston, New Hampshire before settling in Key West, Florida two years ago. She wore lots of hats throughout her full life from designing windows at Saks Fifth Avenue in New York City, museum curator, yoga instructor, office manager for a dentist and dear friend and travel agent for many years. She loved to travel with her husband. Her passion was to travel to less traveled countries such as Burma and Libya. In fact, she had traveled to every continent except for the North Pole and she had hoped to check that box soon. They owned a safari camp in Zambia for 5 years. She even enjoyed an outdoor shower with an elephant when it unexpectedly raised its trunk over the wall and joined her in the water. Ellen was creative and enjoyed quilting for others especially family and wounded warriors.

She was preceded in death by her mother and father, Joy and Arnold Becker. Ellen leaves behind her devoted husband and caregiver, Peter. Her pride and joy was her only son, Ryan, daughter in law, Melissa and her 3 favorite grandchildren, Maddie (8), Lizzie (6) and Nathan (5). Her little sister, Julie Becker Lavidge, who still lives in Phoenix, will miss her guidance and shared life experiences.

Ellen loved her dogs and was very concerned about the welfare of all animals. So if you are so inclined, please make a donation to one of Ellen's favorite charities; ASPCA (website@em.aspca.org), Florida Keys SPCA (www.fkspca.org) or any animal shelter that promotes improving welfare of animals.

No service has been planned at this time.