Pamela Suzann Gray, 67, passed away in the early morning of July 15, 2021 surrounded by family who cherished her. Pamela was the third child born to Phyllis Nadine Blaylock and Andrew Jackson Franklin on November 16, 1953 in Roswell, New Mexico. Her sister Karen Kay and brother Randy Jay both proceed her in death. As a child, Pam spent her time with her sister her cousins Randy, Dickie, and Roger Cunningham and her lifelong friend Melody Novak. She and Melody played together on Apple Street as children and later enjoyed cruising Main Street as teenagers. They remained friends throughout her life and Melody joined her family by her side until the end.
In 1971, Pamela married Newell Edward ‘Rusty’ Gray, the love of her life. Together they raised their two children Andrew Glenn Gray and Jennifer Rachael Whitcamp, along with assisting with the care of her two nieces, Melissa Jones and Renee Lawrence and various neighborhood children, who considered her a second mom. Pam and Rusty‘s home and yard were always filled with love laughter and a source of neighborhood connection. Her neighbors and their children, even into adulthood, became family to Pam and she cherished her home and her connection until her death.
She and Rusty worked to provide opportunities for their children and enjoyed great family vacations, camping trips and she was often the camp cook for family hunting trips. They enjoyed watching their daughter participate in sports and dance and supporting their sons various sports teams. She and Rusty were active and involved grandparents in later years and she relished in the time she spent with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Pam loved visiting her daughter’s boutique Casa Bella on Saturday mornings and getting her nails done by her granddaughter, Mackenzie. It was a luxury and something she cherished. Her nails were perfect even at the time of her death. She also looked forward to Sunday coffee with her son Andrew, where she would express her views of what was happening in the world.
Pam‘s legacy lives in her grandchildren. She was generous, sharing her time and love for music, including her favorite boy band, BTS. Taylor, her first grandchild and only grandson, held a very special place in her heart. She actively participated and took pride in all that he was involved in from a young age and the great father he has become in adulthood. Mackenzie got her determination and intensity from her grandmother and they shared a deep love and connection throughout her life. Watching Madison sports and cheer competitions brought her great pride as Maddy‘s sense of humor also kept her giggling while in her presence. Pam loved watching Alia play volleyball and enjoyed her attention both at home and as they traveled. Alia stayed close to her Mimi, ensuring her comfort and satisfaction in all settings. Alyssa shared social and political perspectives which they often could be found in conversation pointing out injustices of animals and people in the world. She also enjoyed watching Alyssa‘s violin performance with a Roswell Youth Symphony. Each of her grandchildren love their ‘Mimi’ dearly and showered her with love and attention at every opportunity. All were at her bedside at the time of passing.
Pam was devoted to her family and friends. She personally cared for her sister, her mother and her father until their deaths. She was a great daughter, sibling, wife, mother, grandmother, mother-in-law, aunt, neighbor and friend. She knew no strangers and was giving of her attention and time. If she met you, she wanted to know your story and she wouldn’t ever forget you.
In her career, she worked various jobs including being a CNA at Eastern New Mexico Medical Center when her kids were young, before beginning her work in banking in 1982 and ended her career with 1st American Bank in the Trust Department after 39 years. Her work provided opportunities to meet many people both colleagues and customers, whom she developed a deep meaningful friendships and whom she treated like family. Her family has received condolences from so many people she worked with who have expressed their own deep sense of loss. She became the light in so many peoples’ lives.
Preceding her in death are her parents Phyllis Nadine and Andrew Jackson Franklin, her siblings Karen Kay Lawrence and Randy Jay Franklin; her in-laws Alvin Cornelius and Mary Gray; her brother-in-laws Carl Glen Gray, Kermit Gray; sister-in-law’s Koleta ‘Koy’ Mayfield and Bernadine Holtz. Also a great grand baby, Luna Rochelle Chavira.
Left to mourn her are her devoted husband Newell Edward ‘Rusty’ Gray, her daughter Jennifer Whitcamp and husband Kelly, her son Andrew Gray and wife Teresa, her nieces Renee Lawrence and Melissa Jones; her grandchildren Taylor Whitcamp and his wife Tomara, Mackenzie Chavira, Madison Whitcamp, Alyssa Gray and Alia Gray. Her great-grand children Lincoln and Riley Chavira (and their father, Mark Chavira) and Brooklyn and Oaklie Whitcamp. Her nephews and nieces and great nephews and nieces also mourn her loss; a niece Savannah Burrola. Nephew, Lane Lawrence, who was especially dear to Pam and stayed close to her making her laugh and showing her love throughout her life. Her survivors also include her in-laws Leroy and Joyce Gray, Walter Gray, John and Verla Gray, George and Hilda Gray, Charles and Joyce Gray, Sallie Sylvester, Lillie and Roy Prescott and Steve Lawrence.
There are no words to express the amount of gratitude the family has for the support and care that was provided by Renee Lawrence throughout her life and illness and the outpour of condolences from the community. Family is also filled with gratitude for Pam‘s love and light, that will continue to shine beyond her leaving this world. In lieu of flowers, please donate to any animal shelter or consider adopting a dog or a cat in need. Pam was passionate about animals and spent her life taking in and advocating for their care.
Pallbearers are Taylor Whitcamp, Lane Lawrence, Steve Lawrence, Kelly Whitcamp, Randy Cunningham and Andrew Gray.
Obituary lovingly written by family