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Claude Gray

June 2, 1929 - January 26, 2018

U.S. Veteran
Obituary Viewed 2613 times

Claude Gray passed away on January 26, 2018 after a short stay at Sheridan Manor. He was born at home in a colonial house on Apple Street in the New England town of Essex, Massachusetts. He had three older sisters, Madeline, Sylvia, and Elizabeth, who all doted on him but he refused to be spoiled. As a lad in a small town he would frequently go off with his dog Nifty and his .22 into the woods and salt marsh, often coming home well after dark to the chagrin of his mother.

He joined the US Navy in 1947 after graduating from Gloucester High School. He married Sandra Auditore in 1954 and would have been married 64 years this July. He then was employed by various tree companies as one of the best tree men in the area and was sought after for his expertise in the business. He spent time in the Maine woods working as a lumberjack for Great Northern Paper Company.

He then became a commercial fishing captain and spend many years fishing and lobstering aboard his vessels the Eva J and the Sandra G Although he was reluctant to do so, could tell many harrowing tales of his days at sea, having cheated death many times. He was well known for his feat of crossing the Bay of Fundy alone after buying an open boat in Halifax, Canada and navigating it back to Massachusetts using only a magnetic compass, a distance of about 500 miles, a voyage that took three days and nights. In order to complete the trip, he had to moor the boat and wake the sleeping bridgetender at the Blynman Drawbridge in Gloucester, MA.

Following his lifelong dream of living in the West, he drove to Wyoming in 1987 in his red pickup with his dog Jake by his side, stopping only for coffee and hamburgers, and never looked back. He soon made many friends in Kaycee, the likes of Bunny, Bud, Garvin, Leonard, Bill, and others, and fit into the Western way of life. Having worked at a horse farm as a youth, he was well acquainted with horses and soon began working for local ranchers and trailing cattle in remote areas west of Casper. He especially loved his horses, dogs, and cats and enjoyed watching the wildlife from his old rocker on the back porch.

He accomplished much and enjoyed a full and rewarding life. His family would like Claude to be remembered as a kind man who lived his life with honesty and integrity.

As per Mr. Gray’s request, no services will be held at this time. Cremation has taken place. A celebration of this “tough old hombre’s” life will be held in the spring when his family can attend.

He leaves his wife Sandra, two children, JoAnne Puckett (HB) of Buffalo, WY and Todd Gray of London England, three grandchildren, Ed of Nashville, TN, Kathryn of Chicago, IL, and David of Denver, CO., and numerous nieces and nephews.

Please consider a donation to St Francis Animal Shelter, 109 Flatiron Drive, Buffalo, WY 82834.