The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

Meet Your Neighbor

by Susan Galbraith, The Quill

Meet Your Neighbors Grant and Laurey Gray of rural Gladstone.

They have been married for 23 years and are the parents of one son, Chase, (18) who is a freshman at Truman State University, Kirksville MO; and a daughter, Torri, (17) a senior at West Central High School.

Grant is employed by Superior Ambulance and Med Force Helicopter Services as a critical care paramedic. Laurey works in the accounting department at Aldi Foods.

Both graduated from Union High School in 1979. Grant was raised in the area where they now live and Laurey moved to Illinois from Burlington, Iowa, when she was in 5th grade.

Their parents are Eddie and Vonnie Gray of rural Gladstone and Larry Booth of Gulfport and Sherry Booth of Burlington, Iowa.

Grant has two sisters, Joni (Glen) Ponczak, Linda (Steve) Radlo; and three brothers, Tom, (Robbie) Gray and four children, Jeff Gray, Dan, (Niven) Gray, and their 3 children. Laurey has one brother, Tom, and son.

Grant enjoys "tinkering" around the house and vegetable gardening. Laurey loves picking the vegetables and eating them. She enjoys playing on a volleyball team in the winter, at the Y.

They house foreign exchange students. During the school year of 2005-2006 they had an AFS 17-year old boy from Switzerland which their family grew to love. He became an immediate part of their family.

This year they housed two ASSE 17-year old female students. One young lady from France and the other from Thailand.

One of the most exciting and fulfilling experiences of Laurey's life was being part of a mission trip to Hazard County Kentucky with their Pastor Rev. Richard Johnson of Biggsville, and 17 youth last year.

Nineteen of them lived in a 2 bedroom cabin with 4 bunks in each bedroom. The rest of the group slept on air mattresses, if they could find a bare spot on the floor.

The pastor and Laurey each drove a 15 passenger van through the mountains with the 17 teens which was quite an experience in itself.

Both of their children and their foreign exchange students were a part of this trip. Their exchange students were the first international volunteers to be involved in a mission trip to Hazard County Kentucky.

The foreign exchange students arrive in September, for the school year, and leave in May to return to their homeland.

A bit of history with Grant's family is that Patrick Gray came from Ireland in the 1860's to homestead in this area and the same homestead has been in the family for 6 or more generations. One of the Gray daughters is now living in the same home that was built on the farm there.